Summer Together › TopInitiative

Raphaële Marchal



by Raphaële Marchal 

Every year it’s the same: we tell ourselves, hey, I’ve never been there, we should rent a cabin and explore the area, before we realise we are buried in work and have no time to plan a holiday, or by the time we get round to it, it’s too late and everything’s booked solid, or we have friends inviting us to their place for the summer, or we just feel like going all out this year and end up in Bali (admittedly not the most common outcome). But no excuses this year! Money is tight (and we’re saving the planet) (and flights have all been cancelled), so forget Machu Picchu. As for Paris in August, we love it… but we need to escape it too.

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Sparked by recent events in the US, people in countries around the world are standing up against racism and calling for everyone to do their part in creating equality for all.

Design Can is one campaign at the forefront of the movement for inclusivity in the design world, highlighting the importance of celebrating and enabling diversity in an industry meant for “people of all backgrounds, abilities, ages and identities.” 

Their website features a resources page with regularly updated tools to support diversity.

Here are a few that stood out for us:

Making design education more diverse
See what women employed in creative industries have to say about how education could be made more diverse.

The drive to make architecture more inclusive
Built By Us champions “untapped talent” through workshops and mentoring schemes. Founder Danna Walker talks about the need for more accessible education and what diversity initiatives in corporate environments should look like.
Decolonising Architecture
Last month, Black Females in Architecture (BFA), in partnership with The 100 Day Studio, hosted an online discussion on the importance of decolonising the architecture curriculum.
Watch it here  ›

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Certainly the mood for summer trips this year is local and sustainable - where we travel, stay and what we eat too! Bike rides along the Loire in France, discovering the Abruzzo National Parc in Italy or the Broads National Park in the East of England… It is impossible not to find the perfect destination without leaving your country. In addition, green hotel designations can help you choose exactly where you will set your ‘green’ foot: follow the Green Globe, La Clef Verte, Green Key, the European Ecolabel... or go further with this sustainable adventure and clean up the French Mediterranean coast (Projet Azur).

What about tomorrow?

"We will travel less but better, with more support and services," says Jean-Pierre Nadir, founder of the Easyvoyage platform*. When Paris-Lisbon cost  €10, travelling changed from a thoughtful act motivated by an ambition of discovery to something easy, affordable and accessible on a whim. Nadir predicts that trend will be reversed: “We are going to change from an impulsive tourism, to a reflexive tourism”.

*We Demain


After a confined spring, the flip flops are wriggling and we’re all eager to fully experience the summer, settling into a deckchair or savouring the long-awaited pleasure of the apéritif terrasse. This is a time to rest and reflect on the last few months. In France, two out of three people turn to “responsible” products (i.e. local, organic, fair trade and minimal waste). Twenty percent of them have discovered new services to source food locally, such as Pourdebon, La Ruche qui dit oui (The Food Assembly) or Poiscaille.*

On the restaurant side, we value restaurants that are doing their part to uphold eco-friendly values,  like Ventrus, a nomadic gourmet restaurant founded by Guillaume Chupeau. The restaurant's wooden structure can be dismantled and reinstalled each season in a unique place. Its menu will feature seasonal products, and Ventrus will even consume 90% less water than a typical restaurant. Opening is scheduled for August in Marseille.

*Survey: Max Havelaar, 04/05/20

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“This is an emergency, the Earth is out of order.”

In her recent book, 75 designers pour un monde durable, Geneviève Gallot brings together the work of 75 designers from across the world who are committed to meeting the crucial challenge of climate change and promoting lifestyle changes to fight it.

These designers do not hesitate to explore their range of possibilities and push the boundaries of design to promote sustainable design.

Gallot's book explores objects and projects that combine beauty with responsibility, puts design at the heart of it, and touches upon concepts such as zero waste and united ecosystems. It highlights great promise for the future and draws attention to the importance of creating in a sustainable and responsible way.

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Back in 2014, Boffi Paris presented "Taken at the F(l)ood", a short film of a friendly band of contemporary Robinsons gathered on a beach in northern France to prepare and share a meal together. 

This is a film (and a meal) to be savoured, at once in nature and part of it, as the tide gently advances and ultimately washes in. Joyful, simple and ephemeral - what more could we hope for as we leave the city behind this summer?

Taken at the F(l)ood was created from an original idea by Marc Bretillot and Laurent Denize d'Estrées, with the collaboration of chef Alexandre Gauthier and photographer Louis Teran.

Production 14 Septembre


Combining conviviality and social distancing, PBM Studio’s  table divider prototype, supports social distancing principles in restaurant spaces without compromising fun times with friends and family. 

The divider consists of a plexiglass screen and a wooden base that integrates a sanitizing solution dispenser, napkin holder and salt & pepper set. Crucially, the module is very easy to clean.

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In a time of disruption, reinventions and global social responsibility, SIAL Paris – a business generator, catalyst for innovation and the biggest agri-food trade fair in the world – is launching a new podcast series featuring innovators and agents of change in the global food industry. 

#OwnTheChange will present the vision and perspectives of emerging entrepreneurs and established industry leaders in a conversational format. The series will highlight themes and topics which will be further explored during the SIAL 2020 fair in Paris, 18-22 October.

Podcast 1

Podcast 2