Leading figures from the worlds of business, advertising, design and philanthropy gathered in New York City this week to honor the best in creative work creating a real social impact at the third annual D&AD Impact Awards.
D&AD Impact celebrates creative campaigns that contribute towards a better and more sustainable future. In total, 76 D&AD Impact Pencils were awarded to campaigns, projects and products addressing some of the most pressing issues in the world today.
“In today’s social climate, consumers are more conscious of the brands and companies they support, expecting them to contribute to wider societal issues,” said D&AD CEO Tim Lindsay. “D&AD Impact celebrates the creativity and campaigns from businesses that are trying to create a better future for us all. This year, we’re going the extra mile to make sure these businesses are supported in their ideas by introducing our £20,000 prize fund. I am eager to see what the future holds for our winners.”
This year, entries focused on issues of environmental sustainability and inclusion - reflected in the line-up of projects that took home the top awards. Eight White Pencils — one of the highest accolades for world-changing creativity — were handed out, along with two Black Pencils, which are reserved for truly groundbreaking work, which were awarded to the following projects:
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17 Graphite Pencils — for campaigns, products and projects that demonstrate clear and measurable impact — were awarded; along with 49 Wood Pencils, awarded to original and transformative creative ideas that demonstrate appropriate research and testing and the potential to impact (12 to beta products and programs by businesses looking to scale their initiatives, such as Dot Mini — the first smart device for the visually impaired created by Serviceplan and the Dot corporation; and ProxyAddress by Hildrey Studio, which helps those facing homelessness maintain access to support even after they have lost an address).
New to D&AD Impact this year is a $20,000 prize fund open for prototypes, products and projects from a range of categories. The cash prize was awarded to DDB Mudra Group and the organization Prerana Anti-Trafficking for their Project Free Period initiative. The project, developed with feminine hygiene brand Stayfree India / Johnson & Johnson, supports women in the sex trade to build vocational skills to allow them to sustain themselves in new lines of work.
The 2018 D&AD Impact Council, who judged the work, included William Seabrook (Global Chief Creative Officer, IBM), Neil Blumenthal (CEO, Warby Parker), Marcus East (CTO, National Geographic), Kwame Taylor-Hayford (MD, Chobani), Aaron Gershenberg (Founder of Silicon Valley Bank Fund of Funds), KoAnn Vikoren Skrzyniarz (CEO and founder, Sustainable Brands), Gal Barradas (Former CEO, BETC Brasil), Deborah Alden (MD, WeWork) and Claudia Romo Edelman (Special Adviser to Global Chief of Public Advocacy, UNICEF).
“I am delighted to be back at the D&AD Impact Awards, particularly at a time when there’s a growing market for consumers and voters and people that are engaging in purpose,” Edelman said. “It’s important to have such a relevant category of awards to incentivise a creative industry from all sectors, not just creatives and agencies, but also technology startups and all the different sectors that can be part of this. The work that I have been seeing is amazing. I’ve seen a huge number of creatives that are scalable and have the power to change legislation that can really bring a sense of change in society.”
"Now is the time for brands to lean in to engage an increasingly mainstream group of consumers who yearn for a more meaningful, well-lived life, and who want to participate in helping shift the world to a global economy that supports the long-term health and wellbeing of humanity and our planet," Skrzyniarz said. "I would like to see many more brand-led campaigns in the years to come and know Sustainable Brands community members will likely be the ones to lead the way."
To see all the D&AD Impact 2018 winners, visit: www.dandadimpact.com/winners/2018.
Speaking of impactful creative, in July, 17 of New York’s top marketing, advertising and communications agencies partnered with leading climate scientists and non-profits to form a 501(c)(3) organization called Potential Energy to harness consumer insights and creativity to motivate urgent and collective action to address climate change, starting with Gen Z — an estimated 17 million soon-to-be-voters citing a deep passion for climate change and other societal issues. Its first campaign, called “Donate:60,” rallied over 250 graduating seniors across 24 states to donate 60 seconds of their commencement speeches to the issues that matter most to their generation: Along with action on climate change, messaging on safety from gun violence; and equality across race, gender and sexual orientation were added as issues the students felt compelled to address.