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Being in the World: The Great Green Wall

Climate Series, Being in the World Film Festival

dateOctober 20, 2022 timeThursday, 7:00pm–9:30pm EDT locationVirtual Event location Horace Mann Hall, Cowin Auditorium (Room 147), Teachers College
  • The Society of Fellows and Heyman Center for the Humanities
  • Cultural Services of the French Embassy
  • Columbia Climate School
  • University Institute for Ideas and Imagination
  • Columbia Global Centers | Paris
  • Alliance Program
  • European Institute
  • Knapp Family Foundation
  • Maison Française
email address [email protected]
  • Free and open to the public
  • Registration required. See details.
Woman looking towards cluster of trees in a sandy area

Film screening followed by a discussion and Q&A with John Furlow, Alex de Sherbinin, and hopefully, director Jared P. Scott (TBC), moderated by Shanny Peer.

The Great Green Wallby Jared P. Scottt, 2019
90 min. Documentary

English, French, Bambara, Tigrigna, and Hausa languages with English subtitles

The effects of climate change on Africa’s Sahel region are devastating: desertification, famine, conflict, and migration. Yet some hope lies in the Great Green Wall, an ambitious reforestation project spanning the continent aimed at revitalizing ecosystems and restoring economies. In this story of resilience and self-determination executive produced by Fernando Meirelles, Malian musician/activist Inna Modja journeys from Senegal to Djibouti gathering stories and sharing songs with those on the frontline of the fight to save their land and their ways of life.

To watch the trailer, please click here.


John Furlow is the Director of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society at Columbia. His focus is on connecting complex climate science to decision making to improve lives and livelihoods in developing countries. He is interested in policy reform that reflects the value of climate information in supporting important socio-economic sectors, such as agriculture and public health. Prior to coming to IRI, John designed and led the Climate Change Adaptation Program in USAID’s climate change office.

Alex de Sherbinin is the Deputy Director and a Senior Research Scientist at the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), a spatial data and analysis center within the Columbia Climate School specializing in the human aspects of global environmental change. Dr. de Sherbinin is a geographer whose research interests focus on the human aspects of global environmental change and geospatial data applications, integration, and dissemination. He has led projects funded by NASA, UNDP, UNEP, the US Agency for Development, and The World Bank.


Shanny Peer is the Director of the Columbia Maison Française and holds a Ph.D. in French Studies from NYU. She is a co-curator of the Being in the World film festival.

This screening is part of Being in the World: People and the Planet in French and Francophone Cinema, a film festival curated and presented by Columbia Maison Française, with additional support provided by Cultural Services of the French Embassy, Columbia Climate School, Knapp Family Foundation, Paul LeClerc Centennial Fund, Columbia University Institute for Ideas and Imagination, Columbia Global Centers | Paris, Society of Fellows and Heyman Center for the Humanities, Alliance Program, and European Institute.