New exhibition at UNESCO shows how to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals

2018-04-12

A new exhibition launched today at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris aims to explain the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and engage people in action. “WHOLE EARTH? A citizen’s guide to the SDGs (and how to save the world)” is an exhibition by the UK-based non-profit organization Hard Rain Project, one of the winners of the 2017 UNESCO-Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development.

Through stunning, award-winning photographs, “WHOLE EARTH?” depicts the immense challenges to sustainable development, while outlining the collective action everyone could take to achieve the ambitious Sustainable Development Agenda by 2030. The exhibition will be displayed on the railings of UNESCO Headquarters, Avenue de Suffren, Paris, throughout April 2018.

On the occasion of the launch, exhibition author Mark Edwards, founder of the Hard Rain Project said: “Meeting the goals will require spectacular global cooperation by governments and the active support and encouragement of citizens, schools and universities around the world,” he said. “What’s called for right now is a surge of creativity – not just in the sciences, the arts and politics, but in every sphere of human life.”

Representing UNESCO, Mr Firmin E. Matoko, Assistant Director-General for Education a.i., said: “The exhibition’s stunning photos and words shall inspire us to work together for a sustainable future.”

Ambassador Matthew Lodge, Permanent Delegate of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to UNESCO, said: “I was deeply impressed by Mark when I first met him in 2017. His photographs combine a light-hearted sophistication with a deeper dive into the concerns related to climate change and poverty.”

“WHOLE EARTH?” was initially designed in 2015 to propose new ways of thinking and incite visitors, particularly university students, to action. It has been touring universities around the world since. With the support of UNESCO, the UK Permanent Delegation to UNESCO and the UK National Commission for UNESCO, the Hard Rain Project has adapted “WHOLE EARTH?” to the SDGs, to raise awareness of sustainability challenges and solutions among an even larger public.

The UNESCO-Japan Prize on ESD honours and showcases outstanding ESD projects and programmes in the framework of the Global Action Programme on ESD (GAP). With generous funding from the Government of Japan, UNESCO annually rewards three winners with USD 50,000 each. The 2018 call for nominations is open until 3 May.