Video for Change: What is It and Who does It?

by cheekay cinco May 06, 2013

By Tanya Notley and Julie Fischer

[cross-posted from v4c.org]

A few months ago we started our research for the video4change network. The aim of this research is to learn from the different ways that individuals, groups or organisations are measuring the impact of video for change projects.  To get to this we felt we had to start by asking: what is ‘video for change’?

We knew that the video4change network had already defined it like this:

“the use of video to support social movements, document human rights violations, raise awareness on social issues, and influence social change.”[1]

But as we started to do some research using the term ‘video for change’ we could see that very few organisations and practitioners who use video as a tool or approach for creating change actually use this term. This introduced a problem: how could we learn from a diverse range of practices and experiences if we don’t know how to find them and if we don’t know what might be included? We decided to start with the broadest possible definition possible for video for change:

“any initiative that emphasises the use of video for creating change, whether that change is at a personal or individual level, is focused on a group or a specific issue or is at a broader social level.”

From here we have been able to extend our keyword search while we also draw from the knowledge of experts in the field, both from within and outside of the Video4Change network. In the next post we will provide a brief overview of these approaches. So far it includes guerrilla video, participatory and community video and advocacy video. As we carry on with this research we wanted to ask video for change practitioners:

How do you define video for change? Does it resonate with you or your organisation as an umbrella term? What approaches should the term include?

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[1] https://www.v4c.org/content/about-video4change