72nd UN General Assembly, September 2017

The SDG Interactive Exhibition, curated by the UN SDG Action Campaign, includes a multitude of immersive experiences and participatory activations that support the UN system in communicating and advocating for the advancement of the SDGs. It provides a voice to people around the world and a peek into how the SDGs manifest in their daily lives, giving delegates at the 72nd General Assembly the chance to understand their realities at this important annual political forum.

Visitors can try out the latest and greatest in immersive storytelling with the UNVR 360 exhibition powered by Samsung, and special demos such as the Institute for the Future Simtainer, the Oculus Rift, and the multi-sensory haptic vr Light experience by Mae. They can also discover and share citizen perceptions on the SDGs with real time SDG data visualizations, MY World 2030 surveys, and social media commitment capsules at the #Act4SDGs corner.

@UnitedNationsVR #UNVR #SDGs #Act4SDGs @SDGAction

Important Information* The special exhibition will be on display in the UN General Assembly Visitor’s Lobby 18 – 22 September, from 10:00 – 17:00. The exhibition will be open to those with a UN grounds pass or a special events pass. The exhibit is possible following the fantastic cooperation of the UN system and several vr creators and production studios, and the collaboration with Samsung Mobile, Oculus Rift and Tableau.

For media inquiries: please contact kristin.gutekunst@undp.org +19143303774 / Marta.rojas@undp.org

United Nations Virtual Reality (UNVR), uses the power of immersive storytelling to inspire viewers towards increased empathy, action and positive social change. The project supports the UN system with disseminating their content and expanding their impact in 360’ video and virtual reality. The series provides a deeper understanding for those living in the most complex development challenges, catalyzing urgency for those most in danger of being left behind if the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are not met. The project is implemented by the UN SDG Action Campaign and includes films from across the UN system, as well as content creators supporting the UN’s mission.

SDG Interactive Zone, powered by Tableau and the SDG Action Campaign

#Act4SDGs Corner – Powered by the SDG Action Campaign and Tableau

On 25 September, 2017 – the second anniversary of the official ratification of the SDGs — we are calling for people across the world to take action on the global goals and tell leaders how they are performing. Join over 300 civil societies, volunteers and citizens around the world to send a strong signal to leaders about the importance of the SDGs to keep up the momentum!

Visit the #Act4SDG booth and to share your opinions on the SDGs and what you are going to do to make sure we are on the right path to achieve them by 2030:

  • put yourself on the map of the global day of action by signing up to join the #Act4SDGs campaign
  • share your opinion on SDG priorities and perceived progress with the MY World Survey.
  • interact with live data visualizations on people’s perceptions around the world
  • spend a moment in the social media corner for some selfies and short video clips #act4sdgs to share your story of action for SDGs

The #Act4SDG campaign is coordinated by the UN SDG Action Campaign, the World We Want, national coalitions of the Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) and Action for Sustainable Development. Visit http://act4sdgs.org/ to join!


SIMTAINER (10:00)Institute for the Future’s Emerging Media Lab

SIMTAINER allows users to envision the future using shipping containers in multiple aspects of daily life. The experience takes viewers through 3 interactive scenarios:

  • Micro-Clinic: A look at the potential future of low cost, high impact medical clinics
  • Micro-Home: Step into a micro-home in this futuristic simulation
  • Micro-Farm: Experience farming in the future in a container-based vertical farm

SIMTAINER was created by the the Institute for the Future’s Emerging Media Lab to address tomorrow’s constraints on industry and life through today’s available, low-cost technology. The EML at IFTF serves as a prototyping studio, an independent research group, and an active participant in the continually evolving relationship between humans and the sophisticated media systems we create.

LIGHT (04:00): Created by Jacob Marshall; Music by MAE featuring Tim Fain, VR animation directed by David Lobser, Haptics by Neuroscientist David Eagleman & Neosensory

Fusion of light, sound, and touch has been the inspiration behind many great leaps in the arts. From primeval fireside songs, to Kandinsky, to Fantasia, to the iTunes visualizer, humankind is innately enthralled by the mysterious dance between music, color, and vibration.  Science has now caught up to this instinctive fascination, making this fusion possible.  “Light” is a collaboration between top-tier talent from multiple disciplines including the fields of virtual reality, music, engineering, neuroscience, haptics, and animation to create a first-of-its-kind live-synced VR experience of art for the whole body. After having this experience, participants are then asked to write a short reflection responding to the piece. These collective responses reveal the underlying fabric of our shared humanity and invite a posture of humility in the face of the radical collaboration required by all of us to accomplish the SDGs.

Oculus Rift Demo

The Oculus team at Facebook lets people experience anything, anywhere, with anyone through world-class VR hardware and software. With global departments dedicated to VR research, computer vision, haptics, social interaction, and more, Oculus is committed to driving the state of the art forward through relentless innovation.

  • Dreamdeck, First Contact, Job Simulator, Toy Box, Dear Angelica
  • Social – Facebook Spaces beta
  • Educational – Google Earth, Mission ISS, The Body VR

360 Zone - Powered by Samsung Mobile

[FILM PREMIER] Building Brains, Building Futures: September 2017UNICEF #EarlyMomentsMatter campaign. Produced by Happy Finish. Funded by the H&M Foundation.

There is no period more critical in a child’s development than the first 1,000 days of life. Advances in neuroscience have taught us that children’s experiences and environment in the early years can be as important as genetics in influencing future health, happiness, well-being, ability to learn and earn. Check out how to make the #EarlyMomentsMatter for every child. And remember: eat, play, love! See the trailer here: link.

Sea Prayer (07:04): September 2017 – UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the Guardian VR, Google. Written by award-winning novelist Khaled Hosseini; Illustrated in Google tiltbrush by Liz Edwards

On 2 September 2015, Alan Kurdi, a three-year-old Syrian refugee, drowned in the Mediterranean Sea trying to reach safety in Europe. Khaled Hosseini, the novelist and Goodwill Ambassador for UNHCR and a father himself, wrote Sea Prayer in solidarity with the unimaginable loss Kurdi’s father experienced and to capture a father’s feral need to protect his children. In the story, on the eve of taking a potentially fatal sea crossing, a father reflects with his son on their life in Syria before the war – and on their unknown future.

Ground Beneath Her (06:25): Nepal, April 2017- UNDP Asia-Pacific, UN SDG Action Campaign, Here Be Dragons

On 25th April 2015, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake damaged or destroyed more than half a million homes and buildings, claiming nearly 9,000 lives, and leaving about 22,000 injured. The devastation was so severe that experts believe it may take a decade for Nepal to recover. A year after surviving Nepal´s devastating earthquake, 14 year-old Sabita struggles to balance an arduous routine of school and housework, while trying to keep dreams for her future alive.

You can help here: https://give.undp.org/give/123313/#!/donation/checkout

Under the Net (08:28): Tanzania, March 2017- UN Foundation; sponsored by Samsung, Sumitomo Chemical, the Ariadne Getty Foundation, and Parachute Home, with support from Discovery VR and Google VR. Special thanks to Nothing But Nets partner, UNHCR, in the making of the film.

Under the Net is the first virtual reality experience brought to you by the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign. Premiering in March 2017, the film by Secret Location features an 11-year-old girl named Amisa, a refugee living in the Nyarugusu Refugee Camp in Tanzania with her mother and six siblings. Struggling to survive each day, with no protection from mosquitoes that carry malaria at night, viewers will experience Amisa’s life through her eyes. Hope abounds as her family moves into a new home, gets treatment for malaria, and she and her siblings prepare to start school in the fall – none of which is possible without the life-saving protection of bed nets.

Learning to Hope (05:35):Myanmar, April 2017 – UNOCHA

Spend a day in the life of a teacher and student in our virtual reality film, “Learning to Hope,” set in a camp in Sittwe, Myanmar. Education cannot wait for any child, any where. For more about the humanitarian situation in Myanmar: http://www.unocha.org/myanmar/

Beyond Tanganyika (07:20):  Democratic Republic of Congo, March 2017 – A UN Women film in partnership with the UN SDG Action Campaign

Finess is a refugee in the Lusenda Refugee Camp in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. She left behind two daughters when fleeing her home in Burundi but never gave up hope of rescuing them. With the help of UN Women’s Safe Spaces, Finess is reunited with her children and becomes a pillar of her community.

Under the Canopy (11:03):Yasuni National Park, Ecuador and Suriname, February 2017 – ​A co-production of Jaunt and Conservation International Production, made possible with support from MacArthur Foundation, SC Johnson, and HP.

The world’s greatest rainforest is also one of its most vital life-support systems — and it is under threat. Conservation International takes viewers Under the Canopy to experience the wonders of the Amazon rainforest and appreciate why we need to protect it. Narrated by your guide Kamanja Panashekung from the Trio tribe and actor Lee Pace, you will soar over treetops, plunge into rivers, and meet a local sloth and anaconda as you explore Earth’s most biodiverse ecosystem.

Behind the Fence (09:05):Myanmar, December 2016 – ​A HUMAN film, directed by Jonathan Olinger and Lindsay Branham. Executive Produced by Sally Smith, The Nexus Fund and Shannon Sedgwick-Davis, The Bridgeway Foundation

Behind the Fence profiles Abul, a husband who does everything he can to try to help his sick wife, Barbulu, a twelve-year-old boy whose future is diminished due to the constraints of living in this open air prison, and U Wirathu, the Buddhist leader of the 969 movement who stokes public support for restrictive laws that have rendered the Rohingya stateless in their own land. This Emmy Nominated VR experience ​​which ​looks inside the 5×5 square mile camp that imprisons the Rohingya muslim minority in Myanmar, and investigates the extremist Buddhists who propagate virulent anti-Muslim sentiment across the country. T​he camp is home to ​arguably ​the most persecuted people on earth.

“The grievances and unresolved plight of the Rohingya have festered for far too long and are becoming an undeniable factor in regional destabilization.” ​ — António Guterres, UN Secretary General

You Are There (05:19): Kenya, October 2016 – UNICEF Polio, Rotary International

Introduced by UNICEF Ambassador Ewan McGregor, and featuring the story of 9-year old Job, the last child in Kenya to have been infected by the polio virus, the viewer will join Sabina, a UNICEF-supported vaccinator, as she works tirelessly to reach every child with the life-saving and life-changing polio vaccine. The VR experience will reinforce the essential role that has already been played in the fight against polio. We’re 99% of the way there. But meeting Job, and getting some insight into his life, will remind us why this final push to reach the last 1% is so very important. http://www.unicefusa.org/rotary

Valen’s Reef (7:58): Indonesia, July 2016 – A Conservation International Film in partnership with Within, The Tiffany & Co. Foundation

Go on a dive with Ronald Mambrasar, a local fisherman-turned-coral-reef-scientist and his son Valen into the crystal-clear waters of Raja Ampat in the Bird’s Head Seascape of Indonesia, the single greatest reservoir of marine life on the planet. Once facing overfishing and ecological collapse, these treasures were saved by one of the world’s most ambitious community-based conservation programs and are increasing in vitality each year. Despite only being the size of G​reat Britain, this unique area holds more species of fish than the entire Great Barrier Reef and more species of coral than the Caribbean Sea. Conservation International has helped local partners protect the waters of the Bird’s Head Seascape since 2004.

Born Into Exile (08:40): Jordan, May 2016 – UNFPA

Born into Exile traces the story of two women – both pregnant and due to deliver in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. Early marriage and adolescent pregnancy have become increasingly common in the camps where, 5 years into the Syrian crisis, financial difficulties have led more families to marry off their daughters before they reach 18 and sometimes as young as 12. Worldwide, 500 women die daily in crisis situations due to complications in pregnancy and childbirth. This film was created as part of UNFPA’s Safe Birth Even Here Campaign, which aims to make women’s health, safety and dignity a global humanitarian priority and mobilize action and funding to support women’s health in all humanitarian operations worldwide.