Staff Reporters
May 29, 2018

2018 Cannes contenders: 'Palau pledge' by Host/Havas

By far the top contender from the region this year, this campaign turned passport stamps for the small island nation into a pledge to protect it.

2018 Cannes contenders: 'Palau pledge' by Host/Havas
We asked creative leaders from across the region choose the work they expect (or hope) to see winning at Cannes Lions this year. See all this year's Cannes contenders.

Contender: Palau Pledge
Agency: Host/Havas
Client: Palau Legacy Project

Nominated by:

Farid Mokart, founder and chief creative officer of FF:

This campaign led to a genuine and sustained change in behaviour. It is a combination of behavioural psychology, forward-thinking legislation and creativity to do something that has never been done before.

Rob Martin Murphy, ECD, Ikon:

It has won everywhere else. Don’t see any reason why it won’t win (multiple times) again. That’s my pledge.

Erick Rosa, chief creative officer, Publicis One Japan:

Such a simple and brilliant idea with massive implications.  A pledge to help protect and care for a destination that you sign at the very moment you enter it. More than an award-winning idea, an idea that can literally change for good the future of this small country.

Paul Swann, creative partner, The Works:

They say timing is everything and I’m a big fan of how in this idea they’ve identified a critical moment in the consumer experience to engage their audience and achieve maximum impact. Actually becoming part of the visa process is another highly impressive achievement.

Ali Rez, regional CD, BBDO Middle East and Pakistan:

The simplest of ideas are often the strongest. A lovely initiative, this project makes it mandatory for visitors in Palau to sign an entry stamp “pledge” in their passport, promising to take care of the environment. An innovative concept and functional design lead to a great cause. 

Anthony Moss, ECD, WhiteGREY Melbourne:

In my opinion, one of the best ideas to come out of Australia in the last 12 months. Simple, smart, clean work that makes a difference and also makes me jealous that I didn’t come up with it. D&AD success isn’t a reliable predictor of Cannes success, but I think this has Gold written all over it. Possibly even a Grand Prix.

Nikhil Panjwani, Creative director, BBH:

A pledge that takes the form of a passport stamp.
A big idea that's shit simple to implement.
Saving the world, one stamp at a time.

Federico Fanti, ECD, BBDO Guerrero:

A very topical and insightful campaign, with a simple, pioneering solution: all visitors to Palau are asked to sign a personal promise, a pledge written with the help of Palau children and stamped in visitors passports, aiming to protect and preserve Palau for future generations. A creative and effective way to educate tourists using their own passport as the main medium.

Graham Drew, ECD, Grey Kuala Lumpur:

Cannes remains the biggest creative catwalk for our industry. I say catwalk because it’s like haute couture—it’s creativity without boundaries. It’s big and shiny and not to everyone’s taste, it’s unshackled by the rigours of ‘everyday’ work, but you can’t deny that it sets the benchmark and it influences everything for the coming year.

And just when you think you’re doing okay with your tailoring, someone else pops their head around the curtain to a flurry of flashbulbs and blows everything else out of the water. My favourite of these flashbulb moments from APAC this year is Havas’ Palau Pledge. No surprises, it’s all round brilliant. The purity of using a passport stamp as a medium for a personal contract is rare genius. It rightfully got the hen’s teeth award of a Black Pencil, and will get a haul on the Croisette.

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