Connect4Climate is the flagship global partnership program of the Communication for Climate Change Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) at the World Bank Group working to communicate climate change. It is supported by the Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the World Bank Group, along with over 500 partners from civil society, media networks, international organizations, academic institutions, youth groups and the private sector. View the Connect4Climate Overview Report (March 2013 - July 2016) and download the Connect4Climate Overview Presentation.
Communication for Development has a key role to play in raising awareness and in building coalitions that amplify advocacy efforts among policy-makers, the private sector, and grassroots communities. It is a fundamental tool for sharing knowledge in a culturally sensitive manner and appropriate language, managing expectations, and changing perceptions and attitudes, toward the necessary behavior change.
It was with these principles in mind that the Ministry of Environment and Territory of the Government of Italy established the Communication for Climate Change Multi-Donor Trust Fund (CCC MDTF) at the World Bank in January 2009. In 2014, the CCC MDTF was honored to announce the addition of a new donor to the Trust Fund program; The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) of Germany.
Note: “Connect4Climate” and “Communication for Climate Change Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF)” are used interchangeably
The primary objectives of Communication for Climate Change Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) are to:
- Raise awareness about climate change and its impact at various levels: the public, private sector, and policy and decision-makers;
- Promote commitment among the public, private sector, and policy-makers to take action;
- Build coalitions for further advocacy efforts. MDTF activities focus primarily on three key groups of stakeholders: policy-makers, the private sector, and grassroots organizations.
The MDTF is organized in three components (lines of business)
The Support to Operations component finances the integration of communication components in World Bank-financed projects related to climate change. Its expected outcomes are improved design of climate change operations; stronger buy-in and responsiveness to projects from various stakeholders (including local communities and the private sector); and smoother and more effective implementation of sustainable operations, inter alia. During the first three years of the MDTF, operational support was provided through a Call for Regional Proposals. For the remainder of the MDTF, operational support will be provided primarily through strategic partnerships with high-profile initiatives, e.g., the Global Environment Facility, the Small Island Developing States Network, and the TerrAfrica partnership.
The Research and Capacity Building component supports research on the theory and practice of climate change communication, as well as the design and delivery of capacity building activities. Its expected outcomes are, inter alia, an increased capacity of operational staff to design, implement and supervise communication strategies in climate change communications, and to create an open knowledge space to share the MDTF’s climate knowledge.
The Advocacy and Fund Leveraging component finances global advocacy efforts for the adoption of communication programs in climate change related operations, including the production and sharing of knowledge, and the establishment of partnerships and coalitions. The expected outcomes include an increased awareness of climate change among development partners, policy and decision makers, practitioners, the private sector, academics and the public at large; and increased commitment to invest in climate change awareness, policies, projects and other interventions. Given the visibility and replication potential of advocacy activities, this component has been the most prominent since activation of the MDTF under the Connect4Climate global initiative.
"Connect4Climate is important because we have to take this struggle to a different level. What we need is a social movement, a social movement that will finally and for once get serious about tackling this epidemic. We have got to connect on an emotional level. That is the whole purpose of Connect4Climate."
Jim Yong Kim, World Bank Group President
Connect4Climate is now an established player in the global climate change agenda, making a substantive contribution to the climate change discourse and opening up creative ways to accelerate climate solutions. Going forward Connect4Climate will:
- Support the WBG’s Climate Change Action Plan that aims to increase leading to 28 percent by 2020 in response to client demands and, as shown in the recent Shockwaves Report, critical to meet the WBG mission of reducing extreme poverty and increasing shared prosperity
- Continue to support countries to achieve ambitious climate action by empowering public support through climate education, training, outreach, and participation
- Commit to using as many and varied creative methods as possible to increase awareness, emotional engagement, and action among the general public
- Continue to connect and expand its global knowledge partnership program and leverage the influence and resources of its partners
- Continue to engage the private sector with innovation and creativity to reach mass audiences and influence young people in particular
- Keep attracting and amplifying new voices into the climate dialog, enabling conversations and connections that would not have been possible through conventional approaches
- Leverage the power of online connectivity, multi-media, and social media to convey climate messages and create an enabling environment for policymakers
6 steps to drive global action on climate change
- Connecting & amplifying global and local climate change initiatives. 400 partners and counting;
- Engaging the private sector with innovation & creativity;
- Tapping into the rich potential of global youth as powerful agents of social change;
- Encouraging companies to innovate and respond to demand sustainable products & services;
- Inspiring citizens to create an enabling environment for policymakers;
- Supporting the World Bank Group that continues its direct engagement with policymakers.
The CCC MDTF program aims to complement World Bank-wide initiatives on climate change, and as such it is strategically aligned with the World Bank’s Climate Change strategy and initiatives.
In Turn Down the Heat: Why a 4°C Warmer World Must be Avoided, part of a series of climate change reports, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim reiterated the World Bank’s role as “a leading advocate for ambitious action on climate change.” Kim also expressed his “hope that this report shocks us into action. Even for those of us already committed to fighting climate change, I hope it causes us to work with much more urgency.” President Kim has called for a global movement dedicated to fighting poverty and climate change. The CCC MDTF program is deeply invested in this effort.
Support to World Bank Group operations is the guiding rational for the MDTF’s public engagement. The MDTF continues to share experience and technical support across the World Bank Group.
Advocacy activities target large and influential audiences by focusing on ten initiatives organized around specific interests, industries, and audiences:
- Cities4Climate builds on local initiatives to make urban areas more climate-smart;
- Fashion4Climate collaborates with trendsetters of the fashion sector to set new parameters;
- Film4Climate works with the film industry to spread climate messages and promote sustainability;
- Innovate4Climate highlights the role of the private sector and technology for climate solutions;
- The Invest4Climate platform provides an opportunity to mobilize further, coordinate and deliver the finance needed to help countries make the transition to a low-carbon resilient future while creating jobs and building prosperity;
- Leaders4Climate engages influential and well-known figures in speaking out on climate change;
- Music4Climate draws upon interest in climate change among musicians and songwriters;
- Sport4Climate capitalizes on the fame of athletes and the popularity of the sports industry;
- Tech4Climate highlights how technology and innovation can be a powerful ally to find solutions to curb climate change and foster a more sustainable world;
- Youth4Climate inspires young people to join together to take on the climate challenge.
Mass Public Outreach & High Profile Events mobilize further interest and action by reaching the general public in collaboration with partners. Many of these were a first for the World Bank, allowing influential personalities to join with specialists to reach broader audiences through discussion and dialog of substantial issues.
Leveraging coalitions and global support have allowed the MDTF to mobilize over US$11 million towards communicating climate change, promoting awareness and presenting climate solutions since its inception. Contributions include goods, professional services, logistical services, promotional services, travel, venues, staff time and honoraria.
Knowledge partnerships for education and capacity building are vital to providing substance for behavior change. A wide range of stakeholders, including Academia, media networks, influential non-profit organizations, international development agencies, foundations, and leading private sector organizations come together to promote new ways of thinking and acting. By connecting over 400 like-minded organizations and initiatives the MDTF is able to leverage the power of the collective. The MDTF presents knowledge for education through two initiatives:
- Solutions4Climate aims to highlight the latest research and innovations around climate solutions
- Knowledge4Climate brings the MDTF’s many partners together to promote educational outputs and build capacity around climate change knowledge.
Connect4Climate, a brand to facilitate global advocacy
Since the inception of the MDTF, greater focus has been given to the advocacy component. To facilitate the activities of the MDTF in this context, the “Connect4Climate” brand was developed to increase the public appeal of the program and allow greater brand recognition for the program’s activities.
The MDTF has been very active in organizing and sponsoring advocacy activities that seek to raise awareness of climate change issues among a range of stakeholders, while also advocating for the integration of communication in climate change policy and programs.
The MDTF has also been very proactive in seeking knowledge partnerships with a wide range of stakeholders, including Academia, media networks, influential non-profit organizations, international development agencies, and leading private sector organizations. While these partnerships entail knowledge exchange and mutual promotion of initiatives primarily, they have enabled Connect4Climate to effectively leverage a considerable amount of resources through sharing costs of activities.
Connect4Climate has also been very successful at creating a global community of a million individuals and more than 400 organizations who care about climate change.
Partners include, inter alia, multiple UN agencies, including FAO, UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO, UNFCCC, and UNICEF’s Climate Ambassador Program; leading academic institutions such as Columbia University’s Center for Research on Environmental Decisions, American University’s School of Communication, George Mason University’s Center for Climate Change Communication, Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communications, Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies, University of Massachusetts Boston Center for Governance and Sustainability, New York University’s Heyman Center for Philanthropy and Fundraising, MIT’s Center for Collective Intelligence; and Yale University's Project on Climate Change Communication; leading private sector organizations, including Alcantara, AutoGrill, the Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana, and Microsoft; several leading media outlets, including MTV, Thomson Reuters, Television Trust for the Environment, and Inter Press Service; and leaders in the entertainment industry, including SONY Pictures.
Connect4Climate has also engaged high-profile regional and international personalities, including Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Betty Williams, American award-winning actors Forest Whitaker and Don Cheadle, film directors Bernardo Bertolucci and James Cameron, media personalities Bianca Jagger and Livia Firth, supermodel Liya Kebede, Miss Colombia-2007 Taliana Vargas, and Kenyan rapper Juliani to join the climate change conversation and inspire local and global action.
More recently Connect4Climate, as a key part of the World Bank Group’s Global Engagement Unit supported the Global Poverty Project and Earth Day Network in putting together the Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day event on the National Mall, Washington DC. It was a star-spangled event featuring familiar faces such as —to name a few—who shouted and sang out the message that we need to take action on climate change now. More than 150,000 citizens attended, making it one the largest climate-focused events in 2015. Connect4Climate facilitated an educational youth pavilion, the Alcantara-Connect4Climate Magic Garden, visited by hundreds of children, and built the first solar plant on the National Mall with partners Building Energy.
Highlights to date include participation in five UNFCCC Conferences of the Parties; participation at the Cannes Film Festival and at Milan Fashion Week; screening public service announcements in Times Square and in 14 major airports across the US during the Christmas season; hosting panel discussions at the World Bank/IMF Annual and Spring Meetings; organizing high-profile events at the Newseum and at the World Bank Headquarters in partnership with four other World Bank Vice-Presidencies; being a key partner to the Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day event featuring Usher, No Doubt, Fall Out Boy, Mary J. Blige, and Train, and leveraging partners for "Fiat Lux: Our Common Home" to project environmental and climate images on the Facade of St. Peter's Basilica during the UNFCCC COP21.
Since 2011, Connect4Climate dramatically changed the landscape of the climate discourse. Connect4Climate’s Facebook page has about 600 thousand followers, reaching a combined total of over 130 million Facebook users - this provides an approximation for the program’s potential reach. Across multiple online platforms, Connect4Climate has a million active online users and reaches millions of people around the world.
As a result of all the work carried out, Connect4Climate is now an established player in the global climate change agenda, making a substantive contribution to the discourse, bringing new voices into the dialogue, and enabling conversations and connections that would not have been possible through conventional approaches. Connect4Climate is connecting groups and individuals toward delivering on the global climate change and poverty movement supported by World Bank President Jim Kim.