It came from Cannes

Now that the dust has settled, here's a roundup of award-winning work that shows how advertising can solve universal problems, one country at a time.
Glad tent_Alma DDB

The annual International Festival of Creativity is always a hotbed of great ideas. Now that the dust has settled, here’s a roundup of (not made in Canada) award-winning work that shows how advertising can solve universal problems, one country at a time.

Water-generating billboards
Agency: Mayo Draftfcb, Peru
What it won: Gold Media, Bronze Direct

The word engineering brings to mind a world of scientific knowledge, painstaking research and perplexing math (not very appealing to some teens when considering a career path). But it can change the world, which is what the University of Engineering and Technology (UTEC) in Lima, Peru, set out to prove when it engineered the world’s first billboard that produces drinkable water out of thin air. The university achieved a 38% increase in applications compared to the previous year, and the nifty board collected more than 9,000 litres of potable water, enough to hydrate hundreds of families in the second-largest desert capital in the world.

Campsite recycling
Agency: Alma DDB, U.S.
What it won: Silver Outdoor, Silver Promo & Activation

If you’ve ever been to a multi-day music festival, then the cloudy memory of a sea of campsite trash is likely still with you. It’s an ideal space for a trash bag brand to insert itself. So when Glad left the kitchen to reach a younger demo at Austin, Texas’ SXSW, it did so with the environment in mind, creating re-usable sleeping quarters (called the Glad Tent) for attendees to later use as a bag for trash disposal when the festival came to a close.

Real-life descriptions
Agency: DDB Group, Singapore
What it won: two Gold Direct, Silver Mobile

Technology has helped create new connections and relationships, a trait that StarHub Mobile, one of Singapore’s largest telcos, made the most of when it launched Third Eye. The mobile app invites those who are visually-impaired to photograph their surroundings and then send the image to a volunteer who explains what they see via text message. The volunteer’s real-time reply is converted from text to speech, effectively describing the world to the sightless.

Photo: Glad created garbage bags that double as tents for music fests.