Future megacities take spotlight in film festival

The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research has an on-going web series on the sustainable development of megacities of tomorrow, which has been recently selected for screening at the upcoming climate change and renewable energy-centred Think Forward Film Festival in Italy

The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has announced that its current online series, ‘Future Megacities’, will be screened at the Think Forward Film Festival in Venice, Italy on December 6 to 7.

The series, including this video, is part of their programme called “Research for the Sustainable Development of Megacities of Tomorrow”, which looks at rapid growth of metropolises.

According to the BMBF, along with the on-going urbanisation around the world is another key development – that of mega-urbanisation. About 22 cities have more than 10 million inhabitants, based on United Nations data, they noted. This number is expected to increase to 26 by 2015, with 22 cities in emerging economies.

Their 10 videos so far cover the potential future megacities in China, Vietnam, India, South Africa, Ethiopia, Morocco and Peru, which are particularly combating challenges posed by urbanisation and climate change. This video here is about governance for sustainability in Hyderabad, India.

The organisation highlights bilateral research projects on mitigation and adaption, and they also interview numerous changemakers or individuals like local decision makers, researchers and other stakeholders who are trying to tackle their cities’ complex problems.

As such, these short films, fit the focus of the Think Forward Film Festival (TFFF) organised by the International Center for Climate Governance – a joint initiative between the Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM) and Fondazione Giorgio Cini.

This festival aims to stimulate dialogue and increase awareness on climate change, plus its related issues such as renewable energy and energy efficiency, among the youth through short and feature films. The two-day screenings will also have side events such as discussions with directors and actors.

In this third edition, the theme of the TFFF is on the development of a sustainable society where renewable energy is used, recycling is in place, there is eco-mobility, and where local cultivation and consumption is preferred.

The web series is a means to view and address urban problems now to achieve this vision of a sustainable city. The videos also touch upon the issues of governance, water and resource scarcity, waste management, transportation, poverty and housing, energy supply, urban agriculture and capacity building, said BMBF. Such issues are magnified in megacities or mega-urban regions that consist of “interconnected, increasingly agglomerated cities and urban growth centres”, they explained.

The aim is to put a spotlight on their bilateral research projects worldwide “to raise awareness and to attract or sustain engagement and participation by relating these research projects to the real world problems they face”, they added.

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