Getting Social Impact Advertising Right

You’ve seen this type of advertising so many times now that you’re desensitized to it. There’s a sad song playing in the background as you watch a slideshow of dehumanizing photos, while the narrator simplifies the issues and urges you to “make a difference.” You see it for charities supporting public health, orphanages, and even pets. You saw it in campaigns like KONY 2012. It’s known as “poverty porn.” There have been a number of clever video campaigns mimicking or combatting poverty porn.

But I haven’t come across anything as effective, funny, clever, or powerful as this 2012 ad from the Rainforest Alliance. It’s entertaining and relatable. What I love most though is that it has a strong and easy call to action at the end.

To learn more about storytelling for social impact that is not poverty porn, check out the work of the great team at Regarding Humanity.

Design Thinking at Airbnb

This great video with one of the co-founders of Airbnb provides great insights about how to incorporate design thinking, user research, and an open-minded attitude at a start-up.

One of my favorite concepts from the talk is that of not designing everything to be scalable. Some of the things that made Airbnb most successful were not scalable but allowed them to think about their business more creatively.

This is a funny and interesting TED Talk by Indian education scientist Sugata Mitra. He explores self-teaching and why teachers and schools don’t necessarily need to exist. One of the most important take-aways is that self-teaching only works when the kids work and collaborate with each other as opposed to individually learning. The process of talking through and exploring issues together is how the students retain information and problem-solve. 

Empathy in the Classroom

This video is inspiring. How can we help schools and teachers treat their students this way, and encourage empathy, critical thinking, and independence in the classroom? I’ve been asking myself this question a lot lately, and it seems like this school is definitely on the right track. GOOD has more on the public Mission Hill School in Boston.