Pando Days 2019/20 brought together ten Southland colleges and universities over a ten-month period to create ingenious new initiatives for a resilient Los Angeles County.
Each Pando Days team selected a different goal from the County’s sustainability plan and developed a way to meet it, with a prototyped proof-of-concept.
Projects premiered in individual roll-out events between June 9 and July 21, and included team presentations of deliverables, responses from County sustainability officers, and open Q&A. A finale with judges’ decisions followed on July 25.
Judges included Peter Laugharn, President and CEO of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation; Andy Shrader, Director of Environmental Affairs, Water Policy & Sustainability, City of Los Angeles, 5th Council District; Mark Eckhardt, CEO of COMMON; and Kathy Schlein, entrepreneur and early-stage investor.
Preceding Pando Days Events
Pando Days launched on October 12, 2019 at the Second Home Serpentine Pavilion by SelgasCano at the La Brea Tar Pits campus. Here, LA’s artists, designers, scientists, philosophers, writers, businesspeople, policy wonks, doers and makers, came together to share their hopes for a resilient Southland and brainstorm ideas for getting there. The launch was facilitated by designer John Bielenberg and entrepreneur Brandt Williams in collaboration with design leads from the County’s art and design schools. We then fed the most inventive and inspirational ideas into the Blitz the following week, where teams began the process of planning prototypes for a more resilient future.
See event photos here.
Passionate ideas born from the launch were taken up one week later at the Pando Days Blitz at an intensive day-long workshop. Here, teams of creatives from eleven Southland higher educational institutions turned public aspirations for resiliency into actionable plans, each team focusing on a different sustainability goal chosen from the County’s plan. By the end of the day, teams delivered plans for moving a single project forward – whether it meant launching an initiative that’s wholly new or building on work that’s already underway.
Over a seven-month acceleration period, plans and prototypes that had been imagined over the day-long Blitz got hammered together into something real – from campaigns and initiatives to physical objects. The acceleration process allowed time for design faults to show up, plans to be redrawn, and projects readied for a test drive later in the year.
Emmy Award-winning writer/producer Judith Parker coached all of the teams on story structure and presentation. To read more about our Accelerator process, go here.
The onset of COVID-19 changed the game as all participating schools shuttered in the spring. And while two of the original eleven institutions that were part of our fall 2019 launch had to withdraw, one new institution joined our lineup – bringing the total number of participating schools to ten. All initiatives were completed under lockdown conditions.
On February 16, 2020, CSO Strategic Taskforce members joined special guests for a preview of Pando Days projects to come from participating higher educational institutions. The Rev. Ed Bacon moderated the event with more than 100 guests at the home of Rob Floe, Pasadena.
The event brought school teams, CSO Taskforce members, and others together for the first time since the October Blitz at the Hilton Foundation in Agoura Hills and helped galvanize support.
See event photos here.