In 2020, the United Nations (UN) published The ‘State of Global Peace and Security’, a report by the Secretary-General which examines major trends in international peace and security.. Conflict, refugees, displacement, economic relations, inequality, climate change, technology, armed conflict and weapons are just some of the topics covered. The report is available to everyone, via the UN website.
The UN’s Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (UN DPPA) Innovation Cell partnered with international experiential design studio SUPERBRIGHT to create a unique VR experience which brings the 2020 Peace Report to life and ensures its place as a vital component for future change.
‘State of Global Peace’ enables the user to inhabit the shoes of a prime minister who is preparing to deliver a high-profile speech at a virtual UN General Assembly. As the speech is about to begin, a group of students hijack the security system and take over the screens, demanding an exchange on key issues such as income inequality, disproportionate military spending, loss of biodiversity, and rising sea levels. All the student content in the experience was researched with real-life pupils of the United Nations International School in New York.
Daanish Masood Alavi, co-founder, United Nations DPPA Innovation Cell, said: “The UN DPPA Innovation Cell has increasingly turned to immersive technologies for peacemaking in the last 12 months, especially for briefing senior decision makers who are unable to travel to conflict settings.
For the 2020 Peace Report, we wanted to engage a wider audience. By creating a story around it, our aim was to have people viscerally experience the scale of our global challenges, while also recognizing the critical role of young people in addressing them.”
The UN recognises the next generation’s role as central to shaping the future. The Innovation Cell partnered with SUPERBRIGHT to create this experience as part of its commitment to utilize new and emerging technology to empower the next generation into action for real change.
The experience begins with a stark warning from UN Secretary-General António Guterres who declares that, “‘The Four Horsemen’ — epic geopolitical tensions, the climate crisis, global mistrust, and the downsides of technology — can jeopardize every aspect of our shared future.” Young people today are realizing that they will be impacted more than any other generation by how our leadership deals with these threats.
In a virtual Green Room we can watch a compilation of notable speeches given at the UN by influential figures such as Maya Angelou, Leonardo di Caprio, Angelina Jolie, Malala Yousafzai, Nelson Mandela, Barack Obama and Emma Watson.
Igal Massima, Founder of SUPERBRIGHT added “Our ongoing collaboration with the UN’s Innovation Cell involves both helping to build storytelling initiatives for policy & education as well as expanding immersive adoption into diplomacy.
This is where SUPERBRIGHT acts as a bridge, we design & build new proprietary technologies that enhance immersive experiences whilst collaborating with the UN to enable a new audience access to their research & data.”
The experience is part of New Frontiers at the Sundance Film Festival and will be available to watch on The Spaceship, the festival’s virtual venue accessible online and via VR headsets for the duration of the festival.
The State of Global Peace will be presented by Daanish Masood Alavi, Co-Founder, United Nations DPPA Innovation Cell, Igal Nassima, Founder of SUPERBRIGHT and Erica Newman, SUPERBRIGHT’s Head of Production, on January 25th 6pm MT.
Access online via the Sundance New Frontiers ‘Spaceship’ platform – Jan 20th 6PM – Jan 28th https://newfrontier.sundance.org
After Sundance concludes, The State of Global Peace and Security will be available as a free download on the Oculus Quest Store.
Client: The United Nations DPPA Innovation Cell
United Nations DUPPA Innovation Cell: Daanish Masood Alavi
Creative Lead: Igal Nassima
Production Lead: Erica Newman
Creative technologist: Ivan Safrin
CG Lead: Zach Shukan
Assistant Producer: Elena Glazkova
Production Partner: LightShed
Music: Mark degli Antoni
Principle Cast: Min Ji Song
United Nations International School