“The future belongs to today’s young people and that students and universities everywhere can play a major role in making society more sustainable.” WHOLE EARTH?
WHOLE EARTH ? is a large scale photographic exhibition to be held simultaneously at universities worldwide in September 2015. Through its pictures, it offers evidence to help students, as future leaders, to negotiate sustainable development goals (SDGs) that respond to real planetary needs. Beyond the visuals, WHOLE EARTH? supports a programme of talks and events designed to give students a voice. Universities hosting the project are invited to showcase sustainable solutions they are developing as the project opens around the world. Rather than signatures, the organisers aim for a million selfis in front of the pictures, self-portraits collaged together as a mosaic artwork: a reminder to political leaders that they are responsible for future generations as well as today’s voters.
Indeed, although the United Nations have consulted widely to draft SDGs that would guide
development over the coming decades, student organisations have not been consulted. Early results show that the drafters have struggled to secure the political will to make these goals close to what is needed for our planet. Students emerging from universities today not only face debt, a dearth of economic opportunities and crumbling infrastructure in many regions, but a present and future impoverished and endangered by the accelerating destruction of the planetary systems upon which our civilisation is based.
Key partner and host of the WSEN headquarters, the National Union of Students (NUS) UK is launching WHOLE EARTH? together with the Hard Rain Project in an attempt to make students' voice better heard at the international level. In this run, NUS is working with student organisations around the world including the WSEN to create a new alliance, Students Organising for Sustainability (SOS) to be launched on the same occasion. SOS will allow student organisations to collaborate internationally on research, campaigns and communications, with the aim of getting young people a voice at international meetings and summits.
The WSEN strongly supports the creation of this alliance as a unique opportunity to strengthen the interactions between the multiple student organisations indirectly represented among WSEN student members.
For more information on the exhibition: www.hardrainproject.com