IPG Works to Mobilize Gen Z Around UN Sustainable Development Goals

IPG is part of Common Ground, an initiative that brings together the holding companies in the advertising and marketing sector in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We recently partnered with this group to launch “The Common Future Project,” a first-of-its-kind initiative aimed at creating widespread awareness for the SDGs.

The Common Future Project combines multidisciplinary teams from across the world’s biggest advertising and marketing services groups and independent advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy with dedicated resources from Google to create a global action campaign for the SDGs that engages the current generation of mission-driven young people – otherwise known as Gen Z.

In a joint statement, Toshihiro Yamamoto, President and Chief Executive Officer of Dentsu; Yannick Bolloré, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Havas; Michael Roth, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of IPG; John Wren, President and Chief Executive Officer of Omnicom; Arthur Sadoun, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Publicis Groupe; Neil Christie, Global Chief Operating Officer of Wieden+Kennedy; and Sir Martin Sorrell, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of WPP, said:

“In the year since the launch of Common Ground, we have seen companies across the world uniting behind the Sustainable Development Goals. The Common Future Project is an unprecedented physical manifestation of that commitment to collaborate, and to the important role our industry can take in addressing some of the world's most pressing challenges.”

UN Deputy Secretary General Ms. Amina Mohammed said: “The Sustainable Development Agenda is the most ambitious anti-poverty, pro-planet agenda ever adopted by the UN. The Common Future Project recognizes the power of young people as global agents of change. I commend the Common Ground partners for this creative effort to transform the video platforms that young people use into platforms for action for a world of peace and dignity for all.”

Over a three-day period, teams from Dentsu, Havas, IPG, Omnicom, Publicis and WPP, as well as Wieden+Kennedy, worked side-by-side at the YouTube Space NY to develop big ideas with the goal of inspiring Gen Z (aged 15 to 24) – the largest generation of youth in history – to become advocates for the SDGs and take action toward a more sustainable future.

As part of the workshop, multi-agency teams experienced briefings from the UN Deputy Secretary General and the UN’s SDG Team on the challenges of galvanizing Gen Z and others globally around the SDGs. These agency teams also explored the cultural influence of YouTube, a place where anyone can have a voice, and how the power of video is helping brands and creators generate positive social change.

On the final day, the teams had three hours to shoot, produce and edit rough videos of their concepts in the YouTube Space before pitching a panel of experts including UN SDG Advocate Alaa Murabit; Jake Horowitz, Co-founder, Mic.com; Madonna Badger, Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Badger & Winters; and Golriz Lucina, Head of Creative for YouTube channel SoulPancake.

Over the next few months, a virtual, cross-agency team will work to develop and produce the winning idea into a broader campaign, set to launch later this summer. The campaign will tap the creative potential across YouTube, including new built-for-mobile bumper ads (:06). To support and amplify the campaign, Google is committing a grant of global YouTube media.

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