About Nesta

Nesta is an innovation foundation. For us, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. We use our expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society.

The development process, from the ideation stage through to finalising the game, took just over six months.

While we could bring content expertise and an understanding of how innovation policy processes could be simulated into the boundaries of a game, we needed help from Digital Liberties, a cooperative of game makers, designers and policy analysts, who we commissioned to develop the concept, rules and design identity.

Playing a board game

A group of policymakers from South east Asia play-testing the first prototype of Innovate!

We were inspired to develop the game by board games like Datopolis, ₹ubbish! and IMPACT, and by cohorts of policymakers taking part in our flagship capacity-building programme, the Global Innovation Policy Accelerator, who showed interest in testing it.

We worked with the following groups to test prototypes at different stages of maturity and used their feedback to develop the game during July and August 2018.


Florence Engasser

Florence Engasser

Florence Engasser

Senior Foresight Analyst

Florence was a senior foresight analyst within Nesta’s Discovery Hub, which aims to create a link between Nesta’s current portfolio and our pipeline of future work.

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Rosa Carbo-Mascarell

Game designer, business developer and producer at Digital Liberties, a cooperative of game makers, designers and policy analysts.