The inspiration for this first event on Serious Games came from Jane McGonigal’s TED talk on Serious Games (see video below), and David Helgason’s declaration of the 'Year of Gamification'.
The rise of Serious Games
This event examined how games and games technologies are being brought into 'serious' areas, as well as how serious tasks are being made more game-like. More specifically, we outlined three specific ways that games can be adopted by other sectors:
- by generating positive side effects from gameplay;
- by creating technology that can be reused;
- and by increasing engagement with a problem or activity.
Stian Westlake, Chair, Executive Director Policy and Research, Nesta
Stian leads Nesta's Policy and Research team, which develops new insights into how innovation works and influences policy and practice to make it happen.
Mary Matthews, Blitz Games Studios
Mary Matthews is Strategy and Business Development Director for Blitz Games Studios, one of the world’s largest independent videogames developers. She has a particular responsibility for developing new areas of business for the company’s expertise in engagement, game design and technology, which includes games for training and learning. Mary’s background is in broadcast journalism, business and public policy. Before joining Blitz, she was instrumental in the founding of the Serious Games Institute at Coventry University. Mary is a non executive director of several agencies working to support skills development and economic growth in the UK’s creative industries. She is also a member of the Peer Review College for the Arts and Humanities Research Council.
Alex Fleetwood, Hide and Seek
Alex Fleetwood founded Hide&Seek in 2007 and has had a hand in all its projects since then. Hide&Seek founded the UK’s first festival of pervasive games in London in 2007, which is now the Hide&Seek Weekender, taking place every summer on London’s South Bank. Hide&Seek believes that play, as a theme, a way of being, and design tool, is integral to understanding how culture will develop in the 21st century. Hide & Seek worked with Nesta and Think Public on the Playmakers project in 2009.
Hide&Seek works with a range of partners in the commercial and cultural sectors, including: PlayStation, Warner Bros, Cadbury, Channel 4, Tate Modern and the Royal Opera House. Alex sits on the London advisory panel for Artists Taking the Lead, the main commissioning programme for the 2012 Cultural Olympiad, and recently won the British Council UK Young Performing Arts Entrepreneur of the Year Award.