We live at a time when the people at the top who have to make or influence decisions in our sector are time-starved, over-burdened and, truth to tell, not about to spend a lot of time reading, or even listening or otherwise trying to ingest the great glaciers of data views and recommendations that are about to inundate and eventually freeze them solid for more thousands of years. But for those of us who see ourselves as change-agents, we need to find ways to capture their attention in order to widen their intellectual pallet in order to draw their attention to a range of new ideas and alterative problem-solving approaches beyond the ones that normally inform (and limit) their choices. Well, what about a series of attention-grabbing, lesson-purveying one-minute movies that can get them thinking in broader terms? And better than that, share with their families and colleagues. Might we have a look and think about this together?
How this is going to work
It is our dead-serious intention to make use of all the tools and tricks we can lay our hands on to get the basic message of this program across: namely that to save the planet, our cities and indeed ourselves, we really should be trying to understand better what happens if people start to think more in terms of not things, physical objects, but rather of services, i.e., whatever it is that they really need. You will find one or twice in this site the frequently quoted citation of Aristotle that . . . “On the whole, you find wealth much more in use than in ownership.”
Our goal in selecting and sharing these short films is not to try to convert people in a single minute or two to our priorities and our way of thinking, but rather to familiarize them just a bit in a soft way about the fact that there are, in fact, other ways of seeing and doing things when it comes to getting around in cities. We want to open a few doors . . . but no pushing.
We intend in this section to provide a certain number of very short videos that in our view can help get these points across. And since many of our international readers are not that familiar with fast-paced English dialogue, we shall try to limit ourselves to videos which are image- and not word-heavy. Here you have our first small handful of candidates for your attention. Your comments are most welcome.
PS. The videos are of course more effective when viewed full screen.
Homage to Hans Monderman (80 seconds)
Almost without words – an unexpected street interview in Groningen, a slice of life as lived by our old friend and transport innovating colleague Robert Stussi. Robert has entitled it: “Unexpected interview in Groningen. An Homage to Hans Monderman”. Hear, hear!
Honey, you gotta slow down (92 seconds)
Let’s start at the beginning. It is the consistent position of our transport sharing program that much of what is wrong with our current transportation arrangements in cities could be greatly alleviated if we can just find ways to slow down. A bare five miles per hour over the speed limit on a city street, and you have this . . .
It’s almost your own car (43 seconds)
This little 43 second video without words was one of a series of short films developed by the French carshare group Mobizen to give people a feel for the power and the limitations of carsharing. not quite your own car!
Britton on sharing (30 seconds)
A film team came from the Canada Broadcasting Corporation last year to visit Paris and talk with Eric Britton about the city’s award-winning public bike project. Information on the full film is available here. The thirty-second clip was extracted with rough scissors from the one hour CBC prime-time film. (For a DVD of the full film, write to http://www.cogentbenger.com/shop/)
This is a brief extract from the full length film produced by Cogent Benger for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, programmed on 24 September 2009 and soon available on line from the CBC.
Is that all?
No it’s just a beginning. Not only are there a wealth of very short videos that can be part of this main-change attack, but we also have been working with the idea of creating a kind of “media staircase” for developing and inserting different ideas and approaches. The first short take lasts say 95 seconds. And then if the viewer is bit, we then crank them up to a, say, seven-eight minute version which starts to dig in with more detail and strategic content (though still very lightly).. And if and when they are ready, we prepare a full length explication, retaining the lively qualities of the short takes, but helping the viewer to com to appreciate that this is deep and important stuff and that there are things, practical things that can be done with them.
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How aware are you?
And finally to change your thinking just a bit about rush hour?
(And if you wish to share our reflections on this last one, please check us out at http://worldstreets.wordpress.com/2010/03/30/bodhisattva-in-the-metro/
– – > Stay tuned to this station. More to follow.