Garvan Institute highlights crucial research in ‘Disease Dilemmas’ campaign

The Garvan Institute of Medical Research is asking Australians uncomfortable questions about the causes they choose to donate to, in a new campaign featuring real people living with diseases.

With thousands of disease-related charities in Australia, The Garvin Institute engaged BWM Dentsu to launch its first nationwide campaign, highlighting how the institute can help a whole range of people with different conditions through its genomics research.

The ‘Disease Dilemmas’ campaign presents two different Australians, each with a chronic disease, and asks the viewer to decide who they’d donate to.

Across several different TV and static assets, a young mother with pancreatic cancer is placed next to a retired musician with Parkinson’s disease. In another spot, a teacher with a kidney condition stands next to a student with immune disease.

Garvan Research Foundation director, Mara-Jean Tilley, said: “We are incredibly grateful to our 12 heroes, the men and women living with disease, who shared their personal stories in such a raw and powerful way.

“We know the power of medical research to change lives – we see it. It’s a privilege for the Garvan Institute to be able to share these stories and really articulate the hope that medical research can provide.”

All testimonials were voluntarily shared to inspire and move the public to action.

The work includes strategy, creative, media, PR and support from media partners. It was was done pro-bono, and Isobar, Haystac, Dentsu Amplifi and Carat joined forces with BWM Dentsu for the campaign.

BWM Dentsu creative directors, Oskar Westerdal and Jon Foye, shared: “Getting to know our heroes has certainly proven just how impossible it is to choose supporting one disease over another.

“Bringing these stories to life has been emotional, humbling and incredibly inspiring, and we are so grateful for the support of our director-photographer Simon Harsent, the Pool Collective and all our production partners who’ve made it all happen.”

The campaign is rolling out across print, TV, radio, digital, OOH, cinema and takeovers in train stations, plus sports stadiums.

BWM Dentsu MD, Brent Kerby, said: “There’s never been a more important time to support medical research. It’s been a privilege to use our expertise to introduce the Garvan Institute to the wider Australian public.

“I’m excited to say this was a true team effort, across the Dentsu network and beyond, and we’re all very proud to be part of something that can help so many.”


Client: Garvan Institute of Medical Research
Director, Garvan Research Foundation: Mara-Jean Tilley
Deputy Director, Garvan Research Foundation: Brad Timms
Marketing Manager: Anna Sweeney

Creative Agency: BWM dentsu
Executive Creative Director: Marcus Tesoriero
Creative Directors: Oskar Westerdal & Jon Foye
Creative Consultant: Rob Belgiovane
Creative: Oskar Westerdal, Jon Foye & Asheen Naidu
Executive Producer Broadcast/Integrated: Margot Fitzpatrick
Senior Integrated Producer: Emma Durlacher

National Production Lead: Lauren Reilly
Head of Print Production: Simon Holdaway
Design Director: Eeuwout ‘Dutchy’ Baart
Senior Finished Artist & Designer: Alanna Rados
Editor: Brendon Killen
Digital Art Director: Thomas Deng
Managing Director: Brent Kerby
Head of Client Services: Sophie Lander
Group Account Director: Andrew Henderson
Senior Account Manager: Jessica Walley & Ashley Martin
Strategic Planner: Karl Bates

Production: The Pool Collective
Director & Photographer: Simon Harsent
Executive Producer: Cameron Gray

Post Production: Fin
Post Producer: Emily Newbould
Colourist: Ben Eagleton


Sterne Creative: Mark Sterne

Website Production: Isobar
Chief Engagement Director: Elaine Loke
Project Manager: Ritika Jhaver
Web Developer: Rhys Martindale

Audio Production: Rumble Studios
Executive Producer: Michael Gie
Senior Sound Designer: Tone Aston, Cam Milne & Liam Annert

Music: Bopper
Licensing Supervisor: Koo Abuali

Media: dentsu Amplifi & Carat
Chief Investment Officer, Amplifi: Michael Bass
Chief Investment Officer, Carat – Craig Cooper
Managing Director – Lauren Small
Client Partner: Sue Cant
Head of Out of Home: Emma Hegg
National Production Manager: Rebecca Eastman
Project Manager, Platforms & OOH Production: Hayley Kingsley
Investment Manager: Al Vari
Client Manager: Kristina Endrikhovskaia

PR: Haystac
Group Business Director: Carolina Fullen
Account Manager: Mariel Malabanan


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