Trends of 2020: The year in activism

A year of uncertainty quickly became a sharp learning curve for brands, organisations and the public with regards to social and environmental causes. We revisit the last 12 months

For a year that has been, as you will have heard, ‘unprecedented’, the issues and events that have come to define it have all had substantial forewarning. Concerns around the climate crisis have been growing exponentially over the past few years, and even the Covid-19 outbreak was preceded by pandemic planning. And the world’s most significant protest movement in 2020, Black Lives Matter, emerged into the public consciousness after years of campaigning against discrimination, violence and systemic racism.

Yet for all these issues to collide in the same year has meant that societies across the world have had to address them in the midst of also dealing with massive upheavals in their personal lives. This has meant that activist groups – and the brands that wish to be associated with their causes – have had to work harder than ever to get attention. Here we look back on the way organisations have used creativity to get their messages across in 2020, and how the creative industries responded to the issues and debates of the year.