2017 Winners & Shortlists


Product/ServiceROAD SAFETY
CategoryCreative Innovation

The Campaign

When drivers are in their cars, these metal boxes create a figurative boundary between them and the outside world. We wanted to break down that boundary between drivers and pedestrian by making their relationship more personal. We realised that we needed to make our roads a little more human and remind drivers that pedestrians are people too. Each pedestrian could be their son/daughter, or brother/sister. So we created a special zebra crossing that we placed at busy crossing directly outside a school. The Human Crossing alerted drivers when a student wanted to cross the street by displaying their name for drivers to see and asked the drivers to please stop. By doing this, an instant personal connection was created between the driver and the pedestrian, triggering drivers to stop for them so they could cross safely.

Creative Execution

We developed a unique structure with LED screens and RFID tag readers, which we placed at busy crossing used by many students directly outside GEMS school. Thousands of key chains with embedded RFID tags, loaded with children’s names, were distributed to students. When a student approached the crossing, the sensors picked up the RFID tag’s signal and alerted any on-coming driver that a student was about to cross by displaying that student’s name and asking the driver to stop for them. By doing this, an instant personal connection was created between the driver and the pedestrian, triggering drivers to stop for them so they could cross safely. The sensor then followed the student as they crossed beneath the Human Crossing so that drivers could clearly see the student’s name on the screen as they passed beneath it. This simple piece of technology created an important human connection between the driver and the student. Enabling a positive behavioural change in drivers by reminding them that pedestrians are people too, each with their own name and story.

The campaign had over 1.4 million video views with a media reach of more than 3,878,508. And the story was featured in over 70 blogs and 47 times in the press. The Human Crossing was also picked up by the government as one of the top innovations of 2016 and was featured at the GITEX international technology exhibition by Smart Dubai, visited by people from over 150 countries. Smart Dubai are in talks to roll out the idea countrywide. Most importantly, the idea got drivers to change their behavior in a positive way and be more respectful to pedestrians at zebra crossings while sparking discussion on the topic of road safety in the region among the population, and the government who have made road safety one of their top priorities for Dubai’s 2020 vision.

The Human Crossing was created to influence driver behavior through the use of technology in an innovative way, getting them to stop for pedestrians at zebra crossings. Our structure reinvented the traditional zebra crossing by using RFID and motion tracking technology to create a human connection between drivers and pedestrians, highlighting the fact that pedestrians are people too, not objects to be avoided. This caused drivers who experienced The Human Crossing, and consumers who watched the film, to reassess their driving habits and make a positive behavior change to stop at zebra crossings, making our roads safer for everyone.


Name Company Role
Paul Shearer Memac Ogilvy Dubai Chief Creative Officer
Ramzi Moutran Memac Ogilvy Dubai Executive Creative Director
Sascha Kuntze Memac Ogilvy Dubai Creative Director
Waleed Bachnak Memac Ogilvy Dubai Copywriter
Maram Ashour Memac Ogilvy Dubai Art Director
Luiz Vicente Simoes Memac Ogilvy Dubai Associate Creative Director
Juliana Paracencio Memac Ogilvy Dubai Associate Creative Director
Shefali Vyas Memac Ogilvy Dubai Account Director
Ramadan Ibrahim Memac Ogilvy Dubai Retoucher
Irfan Ghani Memac Ogilvy Dubai Designers
Monica Yuri Memac Ogilvy Dubai Desinger
Atul Shenoy Memac Ogilvy Dubai Client Services Director
Joaquin Lajud Memac Ogilvy Dubai Account Manager
Nathalie Sbaiti Memac Ogilvy Dubai Account Executive
SIAN Group SIAN Group Production Company
White Space Factory White Space Factory Film Company