Major funding from the Luce Foundation Launches a Three-Year Project

September 8, 2017

For immediate release
11 August 2017


Whittier College Faculty play key role in the Global Environmental Justice Project

Classroom resources for Asian Studies featured in online collection
Available in 2018 

The Global Environmental Justice Collection is produced by Face to Face Media in collaboration with faculty at Whittier College, Yale, the Global Reporting Centre at the University of British Columbia and the Luce Foundation. Fiscal sponsorship is provided by the International Documentary Association. 

The project examines global issues through an environmental justice lens, challenging students to understand and address both the human rights and the environmental protection issues that accompany global development and climate change.   

The initial release of the project in the summer of 2018 will gather stories from Asia, with support from the Luce Foundation, and from North America with support from Face to Face Media and the Global Reporting Centre. Additional documentaries from Africa, Latin America, Europe, and the Near East will follow in a subsequent phase.  

Dr. Rebecca Overmyer-Velazquez is coordinating an interdisciplinary team of seven faculty members from Whittier College who will select a wide range of documentaries from Asia. "From what we've seen," she says, "these films will be of interest to students in many different fields. Protecting natural resources, restoring ecosystems, dealing with the impact of climate change on vulnerable populations:  these are global concerns that the students will be grappling with throughout their careers. Documentaries can help us to see that we have common problems that need common solutions."  Films exploring environmental justice issues in North America will be selected by Dr. Amity Doolittle at Yale.

"Students are interested in complex global stories," says Peter Klein, director of the Global Reporting Centre at the University of British Columbia which is also supporting the project. "But the business model for producing and distributing this content has collapsed.  Increasingly, issues like human rights, the environment and public health are not investigated and reported thoroughly." 

"When filmmakers and journalists do manage to cover these stories they often win awards at festivals. "says Face to Face Media producer Gary Marcuse, "but few of these films reach the classroom. We can help to close that gap.  With the support of the filmmakers, the faculty, and the Luce Foundation, we'll deliver dozens of documentaries online at an affordable subscription cost that will encourage widespread use."

For more information, or to join our mailing list, please contact:
Gary Marcuse, Producer
Face to Face Media
T: 604 251 0770

The Henry Luce Foundation seeks to bring important ideas to the center of American life, strengthen international understanding, and foster innovation and leadership in academic, policy, religious and art communities. The Foundation was established in 1936 by Henry R. Luce, the co-founder and editor-in-chief of Time Inc., to honor his parents who were missionary educators in China.  The Global Environmental Justice: Focus on Asia aligns with a goal of the Foundation’s Asia Program: to create scholarly and public resources for improved understanding of Asia in the United States.

Whittier College is a 4-Year Private Liberal Arts College located in Southern California and founded in 1887.  Whittier is the host institution for seven faculty who are selecting films about environmental justice issues in Asia.  The participants are Ken Berthel , Jason Carbine, Rosemary Carbine, Dan Duran, Robert Marks, Rebecca Overmyer-Velazquez and Cheryl Swift. 

Face to Face Media Ltd is an independent production company based in Vancouver, Canada.  Founded in 1986, the company specializes in documentaries for public broadcast and educational video collections for use in the classroom.  Producer Gary Marcuse is a journalist and filmmaker with a master's degree in environmental planning. He is also the director of Waking the Green Tiger, an award-winning documentary about the rise of a green movement in China. 

The Global Reporting Centre is a non-profit organization dedicated to highlighting important neglected stories around the world. By globally collaborating with leading reporters and media organizations, we spearhead innovative ways to produce solutions-oriented journalism. It has grown out of the successful International Reporting Program at the University of British Columbia, which trains journalism graduate students in global reporting.

Photo credit clockwise from left:;   Fight for the Areng Valley/ Kalyanee Mam;  Waking the Green Tiger/Shi Lihong;   Greg Grey Cloud at People's Climate Change March NYC 2014; Faces of Climate Change /; Warren County NC Landfill Protest of 1982/anon.  Collage by Face to Face Media. All photos for research purposes only, all rights reserved.