2021 Glass: The Award For Change


Short List
Category A01. Glass
Idea Creation +KNAUSS Hamburg, GERMANY
Production DIE STUBE Hamburg, GERMANY
Name Company Position
Renée de Graaf +KNAUSS idea, text, direction
Jan Knauss +KNAUSS CD
Thies Schuster +KNAUSS CD
Christopher Hanebuth +KNAUSS Art Direction
Michael Krüger Die Stube sound design, casting, direction
Christopher Szillat Die Stube sound design, casting, direction
Silke Bolms Silk Relations PR consultance

Why is this work relevant for Glass: The Award for Change

The "Gender Gaps" spots directly address the topics for which the Glass Award stands, namely gender injustice and a lack of equal opportunities. They call for a culture shift through the unheard synchronous mechanism, effectively and creatively. But most importantly, they do so in a way that makes a positive impact possible in the first place: By addressing the issue in a neutral way, without discrimination or accusation, they show that gender injustice is a structural problem. We achieve this through gender-neutral color codes, fact-objective presentation, and minimalist staging. Because finger-pointing only leads to building more prejudice. We believe, on the other hand, that all genders benefit from a more just society. So the creative power of the spots lies in presenting the complexity of the problem without losing their emotional impact and persuasiveness.


The association "Frauen aufs Podium e.V. " ("Women on the podium") has been fighting for gender equality since its foundation in 2019. They include all people in order to accelerate equal opportunities in all areas of our society. The focus on this issue, especially in combination with the inclusive approach resonated with us as an agency - and led into the collaboration that resulted in the spots. So we deliberately chose a smaller association - even if it may not have the reach of a larger institution. Because we stand behind the mindset and also want to strengthen smaller associations. So that more and more voices are raised across society demanding change and soon everyone realizes: The demands are not just coming from one side, one niche, one radical camp, but are a concern for society as a whole.

Describe the cultural / social / political climate in your region and the significance of your campaign within this context

Gender inequality is a worldwide problem - and the whole world knows it. Nevertheless, the gaps remain, some smaller, some unbearably large. All the more important to keep pointing this out until the gaps are finally overcome.

Describe the creative idea

We make gender gaps audible and dramatize them with a simple as well as unheard mechanic: A woman and a man tell us about their lives - and they do it simultaneously. They start in unison. After all, the opportunities for women and men look similar at first. But the first small deviations emerge soon, followed by clear breaks. Until the biographies drift apart completely: both in terms of content and sound design. Here we work with a deliberately reduced and "sparse" staging to bring out the full naked truth. Accordingly, we support the spots on social media via moving image with a simple subtitle look to make our message even more evident.

Describe the strategy

The special nature of the challenge lies in our target group - everyone - and the media budget: none. This led us to the high-reach channels of social media, PR and the radio newsrooms. To create organic reach here, we needed to create something with news value. That's why we focused strategic thinking not on media planning, but on general-human reception insights that we use: We play with the surprise of unheard synchronic mechanics and the cognitive dissonance they create. In this way, despite the objective presentation, we generate attention and emotionally engage the audience. Combined with the broad identification range of non-professional speakers, the spots develop their very own persuasive power. Primed by the zeitgeist of rising attention for the unfairness of gender gaps, the campaign fell on fertile ground. We made the sometimes creeping, sometimes screaming injustice newly tangible and gained the attention neccessary for "Frauen aufs Podium".

Describe the execution

We went on air for the first time at the beginning of the “super election year” to raise awareness of the issue for the various regional elections. This year, International Women's Day was on March 8, and Equal Pay Day was on March 10: This week was our big kick-off with PR and social media. For a further boost, especially in the form of collaborations with influencers, we took advantage of the weeks before the big federal election, when the parties themselves were no longer allowed to promote themselves - we used this message break to once again emphasize the important issue of gender equality, and also used symbioses here with the commitment of other initiatives, that we supported, too – such as the online tool „Wahltraut“, which examined the political election programs for attitudes and plans relating to equality and thus went hand in hand with our call.

Describe the results / impact

Social Media impressions on the association's channels increased by around 150%, on Instagram even by 900%. We were able to achieve a reach of about 2 million through local radio stations (e.g. MultiCult Berlin, FreeFM Ulm, DRA Augsburg) and the reports in prestigious special interest magazines such as W&V or PAGE. And the numbers continue to increase, also due to the international attention through creative awards. Besides quantitative feedback, qualitative feedback is particularly important for us. The reactions on social media ("wow!", "THIS!", "Incredibly well done!") and numerous emails to the association ("Sincere thanks for that!" - Kerstin B.) indicate that we have achieved change. Because a structural culture shift only occurs through behavioral change in individuals, such as changes in voting behavior. And surely our spots are one contribution of many to the left-progressive turnaround of this year’s election results and our newly elected female president of the parliament.