Designing Serious Games to Understand the Challenges of the Anthropocene

DS 122: Proceedings of the Design Society: 24th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED23)

Year: 2023
Editor: Kevin Otto, Boris Eisenbart, Claudia Eckert, Benoit Eynard, Dieter Krause, Josef Oehmen, Nad
Author: Boissier, Mathilde (1); Jost, Vincent (2,1); Mangeot, Mathieu (1); Viénot, Léa (1)
Series: ICED
Institution: 1: INRIA / Laboratoire Jean Kuntzmann,
Section: Design Methods
Page(s): 1397-1406
DOI number:


The challenges of the Anthropocene require a deep transformation of the world's economic organization. In order to manage such a change, it is necessary to have a systemic vision of the resources, processes at stake and their interdependencies. One possible approach to modeling part of this complexity is biophysical flow accounting. One of the challenges is to involve populations in participatory processes. It is therefore important to understand the systemic effects. However, biophysical accounting tools remain too complicated.

This is why we have designed serious games to present the issues in a simple way, to articulate them with concrete experiences already lived by citizens and to take a step back, by mobilizing their participation, their emotions and the discussions.

The first game was designed to show the geographical transfer of pressure through the description of the steps leading to the purchase of a chicken, starting with the vegetable culture allowing to feed it.

The second game was designed to show the competition of use between resources. Designed as a board game, it also involves reflection on the cooperative and competitive aspects of many societal situations.

Keywords: Sustainability, Multi- / Cross- / Trans-disciplinary processes, Education

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