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How readers are catalysts for change at The Globe Add to ...

In a little more than a week, readers will pick up a copy of a redesigned Globe and Mail, and the transformation at globeandmail.com is already underway. This latest evolution marks a new chapter for The Globe, and its journalism.

Globe editor-in-chief John Stackhouse puts the significance of the innovation this way: On Oct. 1, The Globe and Mail will reveal a new look. This change coincides with the launch of a discussion that begins in our pages, but ultimately lives beyond them.

We hope, and intend, for this discussion to strike at the heart of how Canadians define ourselves, and our nation. It is meant to go beyond words. We hope it will become a turning point.

We need to re-examine the Canadian institutions, and conceits, that we hold dear. Instead of locking ourselves in celebrations of the past, we want to explore our future - and all we can do to make it brilliant. But what really can eight discussions over two months achieve? We hope they ignite a million great Canadian debates, at breakfast tables and board tables.

In some ways, those debates have already begun - in recent weeks, The Globe and Mail invited readers to help shape our journalism prior to the launch of these discussions . Thousands from coast to coast sent us their thoughts on where Canada (and The Globe and Mail) is headed, and where it should be going. From those applicants, an exclusive group was selected.

These readers, whom we've dubbed The Globe Catalysts, represent cities and towns across Canada. Some are retired and some are still in university. They come from diverse backgrounds, with varied professions and interests.

They've been telling us their thoughts on our stories, and we also asked for their feedback on how members of our online community can have a richer experience at globeandmail.com. They provided hundreds of suggestions, and we used their input to guide recent upgrades to our commenting system. Over the next few months, we'll be sharing more ways the Catalysts are shaping changes to globeandmail.com, so stay tuned.

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