TV PROGRAMME  • Department / Unit Media


BIG CITIES will be a documentary series focusing on the discussion, comparison, exchange, and implementation of solutions to current problems in the world’s largest cities.

Format and style will target general audiences from all cultural backgrounds, but especially try to attract younger viewers.

Each of BIG CITIES documentaries will explore a specific story led by a character that shares its experience of creating an innovative solution to a specific problem in the city in question. The protagonists of our documentaries will be those who make change happen: leading contemporary experts – architects and urban planners among other globally influential professionals, but also ordinary citizens or groups of people, young and old, who have a particularly important project or idea to promote sustainable city life. Inspiring personalities and their best practices will set the tone of each episode.

The inspiring character-driven documentaries to be produced by the BIG CITIES project will cover a number of agreed major urban issues and themes, including mobility, housing and slum upgrading, safety, climate change, planning and design, economy, reconstruction, governance, human rights, water and sanitation, land, energy, legislation, gender, and social and intercultural issues.

The choice of stories and the editorial research and scriptwriting will be overseen by an international editorial board.

In order to give BIG CITIES the broadest possible reach, we will use a multimedia approach to distribute content. Documentaries will first be broadcast by the partner, but they will then also be made freely available on the web, so that they can be screened anytime, anywhere. In addition, the web platform will also offer additional materials to be especially used in educational contexts, such as longer and/or full versions of expert interviews, short clips on specific content items, as well as worksheets and teacher guidelines.




Production status

Aim: 8x52’, 40x13’

Year of production

Autumn 2016

Interested Broadcaster
ARD-SWR/Germany, RAI/Italy, UR/Sweden TAL (Television America Latina, Sao Paolo / Broadcasters Association of Latin America) with 10 members, ABU Kuala Lumpur, NHK / Japan Contacts ongoing with ABU, ASBU, COPEAM, NORDVISION

Contact detail

Jeroen Depraetere
Head of TV
+41 22 717 2191