Building Peace with Nature: Announcing the 2021 Global Build Challenge Winners

10 Jan 2022 Unesco Peace with Nature challenge banner

Our planet is in crisis. Climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution of air, water, and land are impacting every corner of the globe. We all need to act and change our ways of living.

This was the theme of the 2021 Global Build Challenge hosted in partnership with UNESCO: Peace with Nature. For this challenge we asked students to consider how we can all change our ways of living and live more sustainably. Students around the globe immediately took to the challenge and considered how we can live in harmony with nature. They then modelled their ideas in Minecraft: Education Edition, working in teams to design and build in an immersive Minecraft world.

Students from 109 countries participated in the Global Build Challenge, twice as many countries as 2020. The range and quality of entries were considered outstanding by the panel of judges comprised of UNESCO staff and educators. The level of detail, depth of thought, and understanding of how we might live better with nature was excellent. Students spent thousands of hours working together to finalize their submissions, eventually submitting short videos documenting their Minecraft builds and explaining how their creations address sustainable development.

Students explored broad themes like sustainable community and biodiversity as well as locally relevant topics such as coral protection. Others explored innovative ideas in energy generation, food production and transport. Winners were chosen based on the level of understanding of the topic, as well as the innovation demonstrated in how we can live together better with nature.

We are excited to announce two grand prize winners of the 2021 Global Build Challenge:

  • Allen D. Nease High School, United States – T.V.B.J. Project

  • Miriam College, Philippines – Reuben's Stun Seeds

Special congratulations to our global finalists from:

  • Inkster School, Canada
  • The Grammar School, Cyprus
  • Temple Hill International School, Philippines
  • Ain Jaloot Primary Girls School, Bahrain
  • De La Salle Santiago Zobel School, Philippines
  • Allen D. Nease High School, United States
  • Makati Hope Christian School, Philippines
  • Exploratory Center for Science and Technology West Mansoura, Egypt

You can view all the winning submissions on YouTube here. These videos are a remarkable example of the power of game-based learning, as well as the ingenuity and problem-solving abilities of young people around the world.

We would like to thank UNESCO staff who provided expertise and support for the challenge. We’d also like to thank the volunteer judges from around the world who helped us look at so many entries.

You can still play the UNESCO Peace with Nature world in Minecraft: Education Edition here.