Notably, O Globo newspaper’s Faz Diferença award candidates this year include United Nations Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing Raquel Rolnik, who has criticized the city’s removal policy, and the pioneering FLUPP, or International Literary Festival in Pacified Favelas, organized by Écio Salles, Toni Marques, and Julio Ludemir. Other candidates include the telenovela Avenida Brasil, which brought hidden aspects of life in Rio de Janeiro to national television; Marcus Faustin, the creator of the groundbreaking pacified favela youth program Agência de Redes para a Juventude; Jailson da Silva e Souza’s instrumental think-tank Observatório de Favelas; and the overwhelmingly successful new art fair on the wharves, ArtRio.
By comparison, last year’s winners included businessman and philanthropist Eike Batista, the animated film “Rio” creator Carlos Saldanha, and Tião Santos, the trashpicker discovered by artist Vik Muniz for his film Wasteland.
Last month, RioRealblog reported on a new move to manage the city’s social needs, which may augur well for the most problematic aspect of Rio’s transformation. With so much activity and forward movement, one could easily conclude that all is well in the world’s most exciting seaside city.