National Geographic launches 'Make Good - Defy Plastic' initiative

2 May 2019

Creative Agency: R/GA

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National Geographic has teamed up with R/GA to run an innovation lab hoped to aid in finding a solution for plastic pollution.

National Geographic has partnered with R/GA to create a new platform called 'Make Good - Defy Plastic'.

The platform has been designed to address humanitarian, societal and environmental challenges by accelerating innovation for a better world.

R/GA Australia executive director business transformation Drew Klonsky says the goal of the platform is to "stimulate" new ideas and "support" young people looking to create change for a better world.

"By partnering with National Geographic, a company synonymous with preserving, protecting and advancing our understanding of the planet, we hope to shine a light on amazing, transformational ideas and help take them to the next level," Klonsky says.

The platform is initially being launched via an intensive three-day innovation lab dedicated to the greatest source of marine debris - single-use plastic.

Through the platform, it is hoped early-stage ideas that reduce plastic consumption through behavioural change are developed, coastlines are revived by the removal and prevention of plastic waste in the ocean, and existing products and services are redesigned to be plastic-free.

National Geographic senior manager of business development and partnerships Sam Boynton says that an issue as "big" and "complicated" as plastic polution won't be an easy fix.

"So we strongly believe that initiatives like Make Good are needed as a powerful means to identify, develop, and scale solutions that may otherwise have gone un-invented," Boynton says.

The innovation lab will run during this year's Semi Permanent festival, which will run as a plastic-free event for the first time.

Individuals and teams have been invited to submit proposals up until 15 May.

A panel of experts from National Geographic and R/GA will then select participants for the lab which will include inspirational talks, discussions, and one-on-one time design, technology and marketing mentors.

At its conclusion, one idea will be chosen and showcased live at Semi Permanent, featured in National Geographic editorial and further developed through ongoing R/GA mentorship.


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