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Planetary Health Film Lab

Planetary Health Film Lab

Planetary Health Film Lab

The Planetary Health Film Lab is an intensive program designed for youth who have a story to tell about climate change and health and want to do so through film.

During a week-long workshop at York University, Toronto, twelve international and domestic participants will learn to effectively tell stories that communicate data, research, and life experiences related to global and planetary health. The workshop teaches specific theories, techniques, and modes of social issue filmmaking and provides hands-on experience with new digital technologies and platforms.

During the program, participants produce documentary short films that will be featured on the websites of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research and the Youth Climate Report, influential platforms used as a resource by policy-makers. The films will directly contribute to progressive policy creation on a global scale.

Program Overview

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the program, participants are expected to have learned:

  • how the documentary film is used as an influential communications tool for environmental activism
  • to produce digital media projects and GIS maps
  • the value and process of collaborative filmmaking
  • to conduct professional interviews with researchers and practitioners
  • oral presentation skills
  • Planetary Health research and how research can influence policy and practice


Participants will create short documentary films about the impacts of climate change on human health and wellbeing in their community. The films may tell a narrative and/or communicate research which touches on any of the following:

  • the relationship between environmental and human health
  • specific issues created or exacerbated by climate change such as water safety, displacement, conflict, food shortages, changing patterns of infectious diseases, floods and droughts
  • how the humanitarian sector is responding to climate change
  • innovative or creative solutions to climate change
  • innovative or creative health adaptations to climate change impacts
  • visions for a healthier future and how to get there


The Planetary Health Film Lab is for youth with a story to tell about climate change's impact on human health and wellbeing in their community, or who are interested in using their filmmaking skills (videography & film editing) to collaborate in telling such a story.

We are interested in bringing together youth from Canada and internationally, who bring a diversity of lived experiences and perspectives.

Above all, we are looking for youth with a passion for storytelling through film and know the urgency of climate change.

Eligibility Criteria

Participants must be:

  • youth between 18 - 24 years old
  • in Toronto, Canada, for the duration of the program. Participants traveling from abroad must be able to secure any necessary documentation (ex. travel visa) at least one week before the program begins.
  • proficient in written and spoken English
  • work on projects which can be completed within the time frame of the program



Mark Terry, PhD., is a documentary filmmaker, polar explorer, Ecocinema scholar and founder of the Youth Climate Report. He leads the Planetary Health Film Lab.

Netta Kornberg, MPhil., is an educator, researcher and designer with international experience in adult education, public health, and the arts. She designs the programming of the Planetary Health Film Lab.


The Planetary Health Film Lab is a collaboration between the Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research, the Young Lives Research Laboratory and the Youth Climate Report.

Winter 2020 Films

Seven emerging filmmakers from six countries came to the Dahdaleh Institute in Toronto from 16 - 22 February 2020 to participate in the Planetary Health Film Lab. The Film Lab took these young filmmakers through an intensive five-day process to create a film which tells a story about the health impacts of climate change.

The Winter 2020 cohort of youth were the workshop’s first. The group includes environmental activists and emerging filmmakers from Canada, Australia, Ecuador, Colombia, India, and Italy.

Thierry Toto (Italy)

Karla Cajas (Ecuador)

Ishika Mitra (India)

Kai Millen (Australia)

Monica Monrroy Botero (Colombia)

Vivian Guido (Canada)

Jacquelin Montoya Hidalgo (Ecuador)


Planetary Health


Climate Change, Film


Mark Terry, PhD, Project Lead
Netta Sarah Kornberg, MPhil, Co-organizer



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