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Education for Sustainable Development Case Study: "Meat is Methane" at Glasgow School of Art

March 28, 2022

Before COP26 in November 2022, SOS-UK participated in the Project Brief, “Meat is Methane” with the students from Glasgow School of Art’s BA(Hons) Communication Design. Students who took part are in the 3rd year of their degree and have specialised in graphic design.

Students were asked to design a poster “which informs students about connection between the meat industry and the climate emergency. It can be persuasive to encourage them to reduce the amount of meat they consume or motivate them to demand change. Or both!” with the intention of displaying the posters around the University campus.  

SOS-UK, alongside Greenpeace Speakers, supported the project brief by introducing students to the topic. SOS-UK in particular, spoke about the role of educationin progressing sustainability, and how through the project brief, students could develop and hone a range of skills that would support them to help shape a more sustainable world and support others who come across their designs to do the same.

The programme’s project brief serves as an excellent example of embedding sustainability in learning and of Education for Sustainable Development.

Many of SOS-UK’s programmes support students and staff to co-create and collaborate on ways to progress Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). ESD is a process to equip students not just with knowledge of the climate crisis and challenges we’re facing, but with skills, attributes and values to take action, individually and collaboratively.

A week after the brief was shared, the students, lecturer Jo Petty, SOS-UK and GSA Sustainability Coordinator John Thorne came together to share and discuss the different designs. SOS-UK in particular, commented on how those who walk past the posters may exercise or develop certain skills and ways of thinking that are important in contributing to a more sustainable world.

Some designs took a spin on familiar advertising and imagery or ubiquitous objects,  items and food to get viewers to think critically about the status-quo, how to challenge “business as usual” and also explore self-awareness, or one’s role in our current society.

A few posters used calming, and even loving designs, while others were striking and beautiful, encouraging viewers explore the impacts of industrial meat through more values-based thinking.

Please see the range of moving and impactful designs here, all of which can support individuals to think critically about the role of the meat industry in the climate crisis.

As advocates of the power of education in tackling the climate crisis, SOS-UK were delighted to take part in this project brief. Well done to all the BA(Hons)Communication Design students and thanks for inviting us along!  

SOS-UK does a range of work on food, farming and sustainable diets. Please check out these SOS-UK resources for more information:

Article: Why banning beef is not the answer

SOS-UK Sustainable Food Guide