How to create an activist movement and initiate global change?

Published June 13, 2017

Under the tagline Play your part, play it loud, Sir Bob Geldof took the stage at this year’s EAT Stockholm Food Forum to talk about global activism and what today’s activists can learn from Live Aid.

«Sir Bob Geldof brought ingenuity from pop culture to build one of the most successful activist campaigns in recent time» Jonathan Farnell, CEO, EAT Foundation

“Through Live Aid he created a movement, engaging people from different backgrounds to unite around a common cause. Even though we live in a different world today, many of the mechanisms Geldof mastered back then are still relevant”said Jonathan Farnell, CEO at EAT Foundation.

In 1984, moved by television pictures of the famine-stricken Ethiopia, Geldof established Band Aid and wrote the song “Do they know it’s Christmas”? The year after he organized simultaneous Live Aid charity concerts that were held in London and Philadelphia and were broadcast live to 165 countries across the globe. Band Aid and Live Aid combined raised 150 million USD to the Ethiopian case. 20 years later in 2005, the Live 8 concerts were performed in the same spirit and was a huge global fundraising event.  More than 1,000 musicians performed at the eight concerts, which were broadcast on 182 television networks to as many as 3 billion viewers.

Since then, Geldof has relentlessly continued his work as an activist.


Watch his full EAT Talk here:


«The greatest threat to the planet is the belief that someone else will save it» Sir Bob Geldof

“It is imperative that these important issues for our planet are addressed: Can we feed a healthy increasing global population within our planetary boundaries? What is a healthy and sustainable diet? Where will the food of the future come from? I am looking forward to hearing more about all of these key questions addressed at the Forum,” Geldof said, on the importance of finding solutions to tackle global food system challenges.

«Politicians won't move unless they are forced to» Sir Bob Geldof

Geldof is a world recognized musician, activist and founder of Band Aid & Live Aid. Today, Geldof is the chairman of the 8 Miles, a private equity firm he founded in 2010 that focuses on investments in African consumer-driven businesses. The fund raised $200 million in 2012 and usually places between US$15 million and US$45 million in each investment.