Why VR Will Change Sustainability


Few people have missed the boom of Virtual Reality (VR and of course also Augmented Reality (AR). The rise of Pokémon Go was quick, to say the least... The appeal of both VR and AR is of course that you can experience things that use to be out of reach, or even impossible to see. And they do feel very realistic.

What most people and companies don´t think about is that VR will turnover the landscape of sustainability communication. We will not only see more VR communication but this kind of communication will be more effective in the target group(s).

So why is this? Well, VR solves one of the fundamental issues of the human brain when it comes to sustainability. Our inability to emotionally relate to people and events that are too far away. This is why most of us hear about terrible labor conditions in the fashion industry, feel bad about it for a while and then go right back to shopping again. Simplified, our brain cannot connect "real" feelings to strangers or things that happen too far away from us.

Enter VR! VR will bring strangers and events taking place far away closer to us. We will literally be able to interact with these people and "touch" their everyday lives and conditions. Labourers in Bangladesh will no longer be strangers that we are unable to relate to. We will be able to visit them, listen to them and see how they are doing.

So what is the next step? Well, companies need to embrace this and get on the VR train real quick. There are (hopefully) lots of great sustainability examples in all parts of the value chain. Let us visit them. The race is on!

Erik Heden

XXX, 11 Gamla Brogatan, Stockholm, Stockholms län, 11120, Sweden