Marie-Claire Isaaman, CEO of Women in Games, opened our first Innovation Lab, a regular feature of InGAME which will create exciting opportunities for the Dundee games industry. An Innovation Lab brings together industry and academic partners to explore the challenges that face the local games sector (and beyond). We plan to hold four innovation labs a year, each hosted by a new collaborator and on a new theme.
Women in Games (WiG) is a not-for-profit organisation that aims to recruit more women into the games industry and provides a range of support for those already in post. Marie-Claire was set the task of delivering a short presentation to a select audience of participants on the challenges facing women within the Games industry. She was joined by Ruth Falconer, In-Game Co-Investigator and WiG board member, who discussed diversity in higher education video games courses. As the Head of Computing and Mathematics at Abertay University, Ruth has incredible insight into the work Abertay has done to increase the diversity of its courses, using UK wide enrolment data as a benchmark. The presentations provoked a number of questions from participants, with three key themes emerging from subsequent discussions:
- Rethinking the working environment of games studios to allow diversity to flourish
- Challenging the representation of women within games
- Articulating the lack of inclusivity in the games sector, by developing comprehensive
Participants were split into small working groups to brainstorm potential solutions to these problems and InGAME has assigned a dedicated team to generate activity to build on these suggestions, with opportunities for embedded research and the prototyping of new products or services being explored. Watch this space!
We are also working with closely with Marie-Claire to generate an InGAME challenge call from the findings. Challenge Calls create a sector-wide opportunity for high-profile collaboration with international partners and will drive follow-on funding and inward investment opportunities. Challenge calls seek to explore and exploit innovations around new content, business models, commissioning models, audience development, platforms, technological innovation and IP exploitation. The first round of InGAME challenge calls will be announced in Summer 2019.
Emma Turner, HR and Recruitment Manager for Outplay Entertainment participated on the day and said ‘The innovation lab provided valuable insight and discussion points around the many different perspectives of representation of women in the games industry. As a corporate ambassador of the Women in Games organisation, Outplay prides itself on our approach to diversity and inclusivity and the lab provided the perfect platform to share insight and the initiatives we have put in place. We are excited to continue to work with InGAME’s partnership and Women in Games to explore further opportunities to contribute in this area.’
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