The World’s Best Solutions Live! (Verdens Bedste Løsninger Live), Ballerup Public Libraries

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Related SDG's

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  • Public
In 2019, the Ballerup Library held a two days festival on the SDG goals. On the first day of the festival 400 students attended. On day two of the festival, 250 citizens, volunteers, staff, keynote speakers and contributors spend a day eating, talking and learning about SDG goals.

Project description

The concept for the festival was inspired by Sunday Papers Live in London. Crucial was the involvement of the local high school and the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) in exploring the potential for collaboration of the two institutions in the “neutral” library setting. The library then collaborated with PLIX — Public Libray Innovation Exchange at MIT — and DTU in building Cube satellite models sessions together with citizens and students from the local high school in the library makerspace.
Methodology: The festival was held in library premises, between the bookshelves, thus transforming library knowledge embedded in traditional books in a new form of learning where citizens present their different points of view and get a critical but optimistic approach to solving SDGs. The stage and surroundings were decorated with old lamps (second hand), small light balls, plates and pillows, sofas and armchairs, to make the library stage look like a homestyle relaxed environment. At the festival, students from DTU presented many products, from lunch prepared in the local organic farm to children making SDG hats, from music played by students of the local music school to local citizens which would collect rubbish outside the library. On stage, keynote speakers gave lectures inspired by the format of TED TALKs, stand-up and Sunday Papers Live. There were key people from Danish green organisations, celebrities with a green agenda, a chef who presented vegetarian food that tastes like meat and presentations about plastic in the oceans, sustainable clothes and much more. The format was deliberately flexible, so that other libraries/cultural institutions easily could copy the concept.
The satellite sessions: The CubeSat program was developed by PLIX — Public Library Innovation Exchange (MIT). Their idea of working with satellite technology could provide an understanding of how we monitor the globe from space — ice melting, forest death and so on. In collaboration with PLIX, there were two sorts of sessions: one for the public and the other for high school students. Members of the Coding Pirates — the local “programming club” for children and volunteer parents — and volunteers from the library’s makerspace were present. In the version for higher school students, DTU made available their special knowledge of satellites.
Outcome (expected): Ballerup Library will hold other versions of the festival — an event with speakers on the theme UN 17 SDGs. This time the audience were keypersons and leaders from the Danish public libraries in Denmark, other professionals working with culture in Denmark, green NGOs and representatives from educational institutions. SDG-related knowledge and working methods will be presented and library contribution will focus on the “why” and “how”. The festival showed that SDG-related activities can be organised both locally and nationally. Ballerup Library has now decided to organise the festival every year and is working to involve more citizens as volunteers. The library staff has now become aware of the relevance of SDGs into their activities. And the local community and politicians now know that the library can provide knowledge, inspire people to take action and play a role in the attainment of the 2030 Agenda.

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