Video Forum - Sean Tubridy

1. Action name

~Who Killed The Electric Car Video Forum

1.1. What

~I will be screening the film Who Killed the Electric Car (2006) directed by Chris Paine. I have created advertisements to market both the film screening and the Sustainability Club. At the end of April, I will screen the film and after it ends I will have a discussion with the students who attend.

1.2. Why this action makes things more sustainable?

  • Resilience
  • Change in Attitudes
  • Reducing dependency on...
  • Ecological/Water footprints
  • Externalization of costs
  • Long term effects
  • Feedback loops (balancing / reinforcing, lagged or not)
  • SLEN vs. TINA
  • Copyleft (CC)...
  • Free Software
  • "Cradle to cradle" design (Waste = Food)
  • Eco-effectiveness (vs. Eco-efficiency)
  • ...

By exposing students to this film, I will be helping to raise awareness about pollution problems and alternatives. The primary focus of the film is gas emissions from cars. The carbon dioxide that is released from cars is extremely harmful to the environment. Electric cars help the community by eliminating these gas emissions and by decreasing the amount of noise. I hope to change the attitudes of students regarding transportation. Although the film doesn’t explicitly describe other ways of transportation, in the discussion following the film I can raise awareness about the carbon dioxide emissions of private transportation and public transportation, and about the importance of walking and using a bike. I hope that the students who attend will leave with the knowledge of the technologies and inventions of people trying to improve the way we travel. Some students do not even know about electric cars and hydrogen cars. This forum will help inform these students in order to decrease their dependency on private transportation and gas consumption.

1.2.1. SWOT Analysis

Inform IES students and staff about the environment and other issues regarding sustainability
Allows for an open discussion of issues
Free screening of films
Shown in IES so it is close to everybody
Gives students a chance to receive eco euros
Cultural and scientific and educational (a new experience for some students)
There is no time that will work for everybody
IES closes at 7
Possible lack of interest
Difficult to market the video forum
Enlightened students
A chance to become informed about issues in the environment and ways to solve the problems
Draw attention to and from Sustainability Club
Opens student’s minds to global problems, which makes iesBCN students more globally awaye
If nobody shows up, the video forum/discussion cannot happen
Better things to do in Barcelona
Online video sites where students can watch the film at their convenience

(see free_SWOT_analysis_template.pdf)

1.2.2. Feedback loops

~Reinforcing loop: When students attend the video forum, it increases their knowledge about one aspect of sustainability. As a student learns more about sustainability, it increases the changes of joining Sustainability Club. As the number of students in Sustainability Club grow, the number of students attending video forums will increase.

1.2.3. Potential Benefits

~One of the main benefits from the action is the knowledge students (and faculty) will gain from watching the video. The video presents a more sustainable form of private transportation that a lot of students are not informed about. During the discussion after the film, the students will have a chance to voice their opinions about gas emissions, sustainable transportation, and even a little bit about the politics involved in trying to change habits of society. An open discussion of these issues will not only enlighten students, but it will also allow them to see both sides of a controversial issue.

1.2.4. Potential Costs

~Because Xavi gave me a copy of the movie, I will not have to buy the movie. The only cost of this action is the time students will have to take out of their day to see the film. Although this is an opportunity costs, the information gained from the video will still be helpful. Also, some minor financial costs will fall on IES who will be supplying the paper for the flyer advertisements. However, I will only be printing 10 or 11, so the costs will be extremely minimal.
Also, the time it took me to research the film, make the flyers, reserve the room, and host the forum are additional costs.

1.3. How

~The first step is deciding on a movie or documentary related to sustainability to show in the video forum. For mine, I chose a movie I had seen before and am familiar with, Who Killed the Electric Car?. Xavi also posted more choices in his "Professor's Suggestions" tiki page.
~The next step is choosing a time and place to hold the forum. It is difficult yet necessary to find a time and place that is convenient for most students. I know that from 14:00 to 15:45 there are no classes in IES. I chose this time during the last week of classes to show the film. I did this because most people will be finished with projects by then and might have some free time.
~Then you must decide on incentives to offer to draw students to the video forum. Students who are studying abroad are not going to want to take time out of their day to watch a documentary unless they get something in return. For my video forum, I am offering 10 eco-euros to each student who attends.
~Next is the creation of an advertisement or flyer to inform students about the video forum. The flyer must be colorful and flashy, but not obnoxious. In addition to a flyer, it will also be helpful to do some online marketing such as through Facebook or e-mail. I will post on the IES Barcelona facebook wall to spread the reach of my advertising.
~Before posting the flyers, it is necessary to submit a copy of the flyer to the IES staff in order for them to give permission to post it. Do this step early in the semester, around the 5th or 6th week.
~Once IES approves the flyer, post them in places where they will be visible to students on a regular basis. Plan on printing around 10 flyers.
~On the day of the screening, make sure that the movie is set-up and ready to play before people show up, so that there are no technical problems
~After the movie ends, start a discussion with the students by asking questions relating to the content of the film. For example, "Who do you agree with more, the filmmakers or the oil/car companys?" and "Would you be willing to spend a little bit more in order to have a more sustainable car that is better for the environment?"
~At the end of the discussion, thank the students who attended and ask for any advice to improve the video forum.

Video Forum Poster

1.3.1. Cradle to Cradle design

~There will be minimal waste from this action. I will print flyers that advertise for the video forum, but these flyers will be recycled after the video forum is over. The paper that I will use will come from the printers in the IES center, which is recycled paper. Once the video forum is over, I will personally take down the flyers and place them in the recycling bins at the IES center.
The flyers are waste, but they can be used as food for my action plan. Without flyers, people would not know about the forum.

1.3.2. Questions for the unified survey

~I asked 'On a scale of 1-5 what is your interest on attending a video forum at IES about how you can be more eco-efficient in your day-to-day lives?' I decided to use a scale so I could get quantitative results.

1.3.3. Analysis of the results in the survey

~Of the 375 students/staff in IES Abroad Barcelona, only 20 people took the survey. That number is less than the number of students enrolled in ESSO350. The main conclusion I drew from the survey is that people have nearly no interest in attending a video forum. 45% people chose 1 on a scale of 1-5 showing that there is no interest in a video forum. Nobody chose a 5, saying they would be very interested. In a way, I expected this.

Complete Breakdown:
1: 45%
2: 10%
3: 25%
4: 10%
5: 0%

1.3.4. Incentives

~In order for people to participate in this action, at least 10 eco-euros should be given to each person for attending the video. Also, small snacks can be given for people to munch on while the movie is playing. Students need incentives because a video forum is not something that most people would want to attend without getting something in return. Students would rather be exploring Barcelona or catching up on sleep in their homestays or apartments.

1.3.5. Relationship with the 'Sustainability Club' (SC)

~If possible, show the movie on a day that Sustainability club is not holding a meeting, but at the same time that a meeting would be held. That way, the members of the Sustainability Club have a possibility of attending the video and receiving Eco-Euros. In addition, the video forum is a way to draw attention to Sustainability Club and to maybe generate new members. Also, 10 eco-euros will be given to any student who attends.

1.3.6. How will this action be sustained when you are not here?

~ For me, this is a one-time action, but I have outlined my action plan so that a student next semester can improve on my action plan and learn from my mistakes. Since only 2 people showed up at my forum, a student next year should improve my action plan to gain a bigger audience. All the student would need to do is make new posters and choose another movie to show. Next semester, I expect the student who decides to continue my action will start earlier in the year, and preferably coordinate with the start of Sustainability Club. This way, the student can hold more than one video forums and generate interest in Sustainability Club early in the semester.

1.3.7. Document format

~I created the poster shown above to hang around IES in order to inform students about the video forum. It is in .odt format so other users can edit it in OpenOffice. The document is posted to the site in .pdf format


This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.

I chose this creative commons license so students in the future are free to change and build upon my action plan as they please.

1.4. Time-sheet / Chronogram

23/3/2011 14/4/2011 28/4/2011
Sean Tubridy Create advertisement Hang up advertisements before Spring Break, but not too far in advance Hold video forum and receive feedback

Paine, Chris, dir. Who Killed the Electric Car?. Narr. Martin Sheen. 2006. Papercut Films, 2007. Web.

1.6. Students involved in this action

~Sean Tubridy is the leader of this action and is performing the action alone.

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Page last modified on Wednesday 04 of April, 2012 17:13:35