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A view on what's happening in the UN & NGO design community
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A Newsletter from the UN & NGOs Designers Group Geneva
Visual Communicators Newsletter
JANUARY 2019

This is a monthly newsletter from the UN Designers and Visual Communicators Group in Geneva. Drop us a line if you would like to collaborate or share any material in this newsletter: info@UNdesigners.org

Geneva goes digital (+ giveaway)  

Looking for inspirational fix to start 2019? We have something perfect for you –  Digital Design Days Geneva, a world class event organized in partnership with digital creative agency Buzz Brothers is coming to Geneva 11-13 February 2019. They will have speakers from Google, PepsiCo, Wall Street Journal and many more, dealing with hot issues such as AR, VR, Data Visualization, Motion design, innovation & research... The talks will be accompanied by workshops, digital installations, networking events and last, but not least - parties! This is an event not to be missed and that’s why we prepared TWO FREE PURPLE TICKETS! If you want to win the ticket all you have to do is to send us an email with the name of at least one speaker whose presentation you would want to hear. Winners will be notified by email on 31st January and also published in our Facebook group! Good luck to everyone!

One hundred years of social justice

ILO is celebrating its centenary in style! Their new multimedia, interactive Centenary website is now live. The website will take you on a journey through the ILO’s past, present and future through 9 chapters. Information design agency ElkanoData was the one who defined the creative approach to the story and the foundational visual guidelines for the first chapter. An in-house design team then rolled it out to 8 other chapters which will be published in the next few weeks, until March 13th. Content production and web development was also done in house with some snippets being developed externally by Squareball. We would like to congratulate them on the great design job and say Happy Birthday!  

The future of publications

Here is an interesting reading about the future of the book that may interest those of you working in publications. After a decade of announcing 'the end of print', the truth is that now more than ever we seem to be at a crossroads not knowing which direction to take. We have all agreed that the future is digital, but we don't seem to be shaking off the need of the physical presence of print, specially when dealing with developing countries. But most worrying, we seem not to agree on what 'digital publishing' really means, particularly at the UN and NGOs, where funding is scarce these days, and it's difficult to justify a big investment in new technologies. 
Whether is glorified PDFs, a visual extract accompanied by a pdf, or something in between it seems that most of us are struggling to find the path which will take us to deliver truly interactive publications that make the often data-rich content more accessible to our audience. An audience that, on top of that, is quickly getting used to the way content is being delivered in the private sector.
There are remarkable cases though, where aesthetics, purpose and full use of each medium capabilities go hand in hand, like this great example from OCHA. In any case, one has to wonder if it isn't time to stop talking about the 'digital shift' and start investing in new skills, resources, renovated structures and workflows to make publications like OCHA the norm, not the exception. 

January Inspiration
A TV series
Two episodes of documentary series Tales by Light explore the hazardous environments that children work in and Unicef’s work to protect them from these dangers. Watch it on Netflix.   
A collection
Take a minute (or two) to enjoy the most notable illustrations used across 2018 by the NY Times, portraying complex subjects like #MeToo, immigration or climate change. 
A (gender) survey
Designers are always waving the equality flag, but.. is there real gender equality at the world’s biggest design conferences? AIGA has made a survey. Find out the results here. 
A (storytelling) tool
If you need visually appealing yet simple ways to communicate your story, perhaps you should try Exposure. WHO, Unesco and UNDP are already using it to their advantage.
A symbol
This 28th is Holocaust Remembrance Day. UNESCO and WJC created About Holocaust to fight fake facts about it. M. Delfino from the UN Design Unit created its iconic image, still in use.  
A seminar
Dataviz agency (and former UN Designers speakersYAAY are organizing a one day training on visualizing complexity, subject that surely could help many of us. Get all the info here. 
Still not part of us? You can sign up to receive our newsletter and also join our FB Group page? we want to use it as a platform to communicate more regularly, transfer knowledge and share our work. You can also check past newsletters here
Copyright © 2019 UN Designers Group, All rights reserved.

This newsletter has been produced by the UN Designers group, a non-profit organization created with the purpose of raising awareness around design and visual communications in international organizations, as well as help promoting the work done in this field. Our channels are both our physical meetings, usually hosted in UN agencies or other international organizations in geneva, and this e-newsletter.


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