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Envision Conference Focuses on Stories for a Sustainable Future

18 April 2012: The Fourth Annual Envision Conference, titled "Envision 2012: Stories for a Sustainable Future," brought together UN experts, NGO representatives, and creative thinkers in film-making and new media, encouraging innovative partnerships to generate momentum for social change.

The Conference, which took place from 16-17 April 2012, in New York, US, was based on the recognition that documentary storytelling, whether through film or other media, can be “a powerful tool in building a better future.” Envision 2012 sought to build momentum ahead of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20), with participants focusing on: just and sustainable cities; clean water; and green energy.

Speakers included: UN Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro; Don Cheadle, Academy Award-nominated actor and Goodwill Ambassador for the UN Environment Programme (UNEP); Alexandra Cousteau, founder of Blue Legacy; and Jessica Yu, Academy Award-winning director of “Last Call at the Oasis.” In her opening remarks, UN Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro noted that Envision's “documentaries and discussions have a crucial role to play in our effort to transform our economies and place our societies on more just and equitable footing.”

The Conference was organized by the Independent Filmmaker Project, the Creative Community Outreach Initiative of the UN Department of Public Information (UNDPI) and the Ford Foundation. [Envision 2012 Website] [UN Press Release] [UNEP Press Release]