2017 GEM Report Youth Photo contest: Education for sustainable development and global citizenship

Contest is open from the 6th of March to the 10th of  April 2017

THEME: Sustainable Development Goal 4.7: Education for sustainable development and global citizenship

In September 2015, the member states of the United Nations agreed on a new sustainable development agenda with 17 goals to be achieved by 2030.  These Sustainable Development Goals are the collective vision of the international community. They merge the previous development agenda known as the Millennium Development Goals and the environment agenda known as the Rio process.

The fourth Sustainable Development Goal (SDG4) focuses on education and aims to ‘ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’. One of the targets - Target 4.7 - in the new global education goal truly captures the transformative aspirations of the new Sustainable Development Agenda. It focuses on the moral purposes of education, asking us all to think about why we are learning and for what aim. The target also promotes the importance of lifelong learning, and does not specify the education levels or age groups to which its themes apply.  

The language in Target 4.7 touches on many complex, and ambitious ideas, including global citizenship, education for sustainable development and gender equality, which we would like to challenge you to portray in your photographs. 

4.7 By 2030, ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development

The design brief

The submission must be a photo(s) that you took in the highest resolution your camera allows that clearly represents the above theme through activities inside and outside the classroom that capture the humanistic, social and moral purpose of education under any of the following sub-themes:

·         Gender equality,

·         Human rights,

·         Peace and non-violence

·         Global citizenship

·         Sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles

·         Health education

·         Cultural diversity

You must gain written permission from all people in your photos to allow them to be used by us. Each photo should be accompanied by description text that includes a short artist biography and a caption stating where and when the photo was taken, a relevant quote if possible and the names of any people in your photo(s) as well as the credit you would like to be used if your photo is chosen (likely format Credit: YOURNAME/UNESCO). Please note you will be judged on the photo alone, not the supporting text - this will purely be used for contextual purposes.

See the “Terms and conditions” for technical specifications.

The best photo will be awarded with $500; second best with $250 and third with $100. 

If chosen, your photo(s) will be put forward for selection to appear in the Global Education Monitoring Report and other outreach material credited with your name. It will feature on the website of UNESCO’s Global Education Monitoring Report and will be offered to journalists as part of the package of materials they can use to help cover the story in the Report.

Who can enter?

Anyone between the age of 18-35 is eligible to enter the contest. Contestants may submit multiple entries but no more than 3 per photographer.

How to submit your photo(s)

Please send your photo(s) in electronic format by following the instructions below:

1.            go to www.unesco.org/tools/filedepot/

2.            enter your name and email

3.            upload your .zip file 

4.            enter recipient email: gemreport@unesco.org

5.            enter message to recipient: "2017 Photo Contest". Photos will not be accepted without the description text.

6.            click [Send] button

7.            Please make sure you also upload a completed entry form with your photo(s).


After the contest closes at 23.59 (Paris time) on 10 April 2017, a jury will choose the best photos. Photos will be judged in terms of message clarity, composition, personification of the subject, and overall presentation.

The selected photos will be announced on 14 April 2017 and notified by e-mail, as well as published on the website of the Global Education Monitoring Report (http://en.unesco.org/gem-report/).

View Terms and Conditions

Download entry form