The British Council, the British High Commission in Bangladesh and the Italian Embassy in Bangladesh, have organised a photography competition as strategic partners, in cooperation with Drik Picture Library Bangladesh as the delivery partner and with Picture People UK and Fondazione UniVerde, Italy, as supporting partners.
For the British Council, the British High Commission and the Italian Embassy, a key priority lies in ensuring that youth voices are articulated, heard, and empowered to engage in discussions on addressing and mitigating the impact of climate change. The aim is to raise awareness of local climate change issues among young people in Bangladesh via the medium of visual arts.
The climate change crisis is now widely recognised as one of the greatest existential threats to humanity. Its impact is already tangible across a range of social, economic, political and environmental areas. Addressing the impact of climate change has accordingly become a cross-cutting priority for governments across the globe, including those disproportionately affected in developing countries such as Bangladesh. The Government of Bangladesh is currently chairing the Climate Vulnerable Forum and is openly prioritising the climate change agenda.
It is within this context that the COP26 conference and the events leading up to it are taking place this year, co-chaired by the UK and Italy. A broad range of actors and agencies have a contribution to make, including the youth. Historically youth voices have often been secondary to the discussion, their views, ideas and solutions under-represented or side-lined from substantive discussion among government leaders and officials. Both the UK and Italian governments seek to address this gap, concentrating on activities in the run-up to the COP26 Glasgow conference in November 2021 and the Youth COP in Milan in September 2021, while also ensuring long-term youth engagement, participation and the development of expertise and skills to support their ability to provide and deliver on climate change solutions.
Photography Competition and Exhibition
The theme of the photography competition is A Better Tomorrow and submissions should be made in the following categories:
1. My Beautiful Planet: Urban development produces habitat loss and extinction and frequently eliminates most native species. Entrants should look for situations where development has taken place while preserving biodiversity.
2. Planet in Crisis: Fertile soil turned barren, deforestation, rivers dying or changing course, may well depict the effects of climate change, though one has to be wary that not all environmental disasters are necessarily linked to climate change.
3. Hope for the Planet: We have failed as custodians of our planet, but have we failed as the shapers of our future? Where are the Greta Thunbergs in our midst? Entrants are encouraged to look for activism, innovation, creativity and sheer persistence which are also integral parts of human existence.
A panel of reputed international judges (Dr Shahidul Alam, Managing Director, Drik Picture Library Ltd Bangladesh; Mr Nick Danziger, Director, Picture People, UK; and Bruno D'Amicis, Member of the Italian Photography Association, and Board Member of the international initiative Rewilding Europe, Italy) will select the winning photographs.
The partners plan to hold physical exhibitions in Dhaka to coincide with the COP26 Glasgow conference in November 2021 and a virtual exhibition and touring the exhibition in Milan and Glasgow. 30 selected photographs will be exhibited, including the Grand Prize winner, and the winners and runners up from each category.
The competition is open to Bangladeshi national aged 18-35 years, currently living in Bangladesh. Entries must be submitted via https://submissiondrik.com. Participant can submit a maximum of five photographs. All pictures must have accurate captions written in English and Bangla. Photographs may be in colour or black and white, of high resolution (min 4000 pixels), jpeg format. The submission must be original. Digitally manipulated photos (removal, addition, or alteration of elements) will not be accepted; limited adjustment of contrast, brightness and the use of filters are allowed as long as they do not significantly alter the images. Deadline for submission is 21 August 2021.