23rd December 2011 Athens, Greece
'Going for Green' lands in Athens. A GREAT opportunity
The first time I watched this film was during a screening organized internally for Embassy staff back in January 2011.
“Going for Green – Britain’s 2012 Dream” was commissioned by the FCO, and tells the story of how the Olympic Park is being built in an environmentally sustainable way, as set out in the legacy objectives in the original London 2012 bid. The film was produced and directed to make the technical issues accessible to a general audience but at at the same time hold the attention of construction specialists and professionals. Potentially inspiring, serving the FCO prosperity objective, but how could we reach our audiences?
I have a personal interest in sustainability and green architecture so I already had some knowledge of specialist Greek events which could help us reach those audiences. One of the most important is the Ecoweek festival, run by an independent non-governmental organization (NGO) whose mission is to raise public environmental awareness and public involvement, especially of young people, in environmental protection and ‘green’ building, with an emphasis on promoting sustainability.
The Embassy formed a partnership with Ecoweek and the British Council and an action plan started rolling quickly, resulting in two very successful screenings in Thessaloniki (April 2011) and Athens (December 2011) with total attendance figures of more than 300 people and a media presence.
The latest Athens screening, which I had the chance to attend, was followed by a brilliant presentation by the lead architect of the London Velodrome, Jonathan Watts from Hopkins Architects. Jonathan, a passionate cyclist himself, explained the concept behind the design and shared his technical knowledge with the audience, comprised mostly of architecture students. I remember clearly one of his conclusions which sums up British professionalism in project management:
‘Ultimately creating truly innovative sustainable buildings is the result of creative collaboration between all members of the design and construction teams. Its realization relies on the formation of an ambitious and supportive client brief, the ethos of which galvanizes all members of the project towards a shared goal’.
British excellence in engineering, sustainability and innovation was highlighted during the event, an opportunity to promote UK excellence in the context of our recently launched GREAT campaign. What a great opportunity for an off-site promotion of our GREAT branding!
We will be all working on some future creative opportunities to tell Greek audiences the tale of GREAT Britain.