Clean Water & Sanitation: Final Blog Post

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Clean Water & Sanitation Campaign Summary

During the past five weeks, we explored a number of topics regarding sustainability. Specifically, our group investigated the UN Sustainability Development goal of Clean Water & Sanitation.

We focused on educating New Yorkers about daily water consumption, which encouraged us to explore how city dwellers relate to water as a daily necessity, and to investigation how we might influence New Yorkers to change their relationship to water. Ultimately, we created a campaign to start a conversation about water conservation in toilet usage.

This campaign consisted of a pop-up intervention in Washington Square Park, which included a stand-up poster, stickers, and a landing page (www.igiveashitaboutwater.com)  where users could learn more about toilet usage and daily water consumption. Because our primary target audience was university students, we kept the campaign humorous with a little bit of profanity to keep it approachable and lighthearted.

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Research & Findings

For in-the-field research methodology, many intercept interviews were conducted. Though the initial target for our popup was university students, it was surprising to see how many other types of people engaged, especially very young children and older people. The few people that actively approached the popup were older and wanted to learn more.

The biggest success of this project was the final design of the prototypes – both the popup sign and stickers. The signs were extremely eye-catching and many people stopped to read what it said. Additionally, many people walked by and at first ignored it, but when they saw the design of the sticker, they were immediately interested and wanted one. A few individuals even stuck it on them without having gone to the landing page.

However, we did learn that just because someone is immediately interested doesn’t mean that it necessarily translates into action. There is a serious funneling process that occurs.

Future Steps

For future steps, our message would need to be streamlined. A helpful critique informed us that the messaging and goals of our campaign were not clear enough. Once more streamlined message and concrete establishment of objectives are in place, there are many actionable steps that could be taken to increase the success of this campaign.

Partnerships with organizations that work in water conversation or with waterless toilets could prove instrumental in furthering the mission. Additionally, it could be possible to run a campaign on social media specifically targeting university students and other user groups to increase awareness.

Thank you so much!

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