Serious gaming can raise stakeholder awareness on water supply and demand

February 14, 2022

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Gaming has always been an integral part of human culture. One of the oldest forms of social interaction and communication, games have enabled civilisations to bond and thrive as communities.

While the primary function of many of these games is entertainment, serious gaming meanwhile has developed with the primary goal of education and learning. Serious gaming facilitates interaction by creating a safe environment with rules, structures and objectives. Participants are taken out of the everyday context and play a role with the freedom to make decisions without impacting tangible world assets. Ultimately, the goal is to bring learning into practice.

The future of serious gaming within the water sector

We expect that serious gaming will inevitably become more prominent in the future. Droughts are here to stay, and we need to find engaging ways to show all stakeholders that water demands go beyond their own needs. Through a serious game, regional water authorities can use future demand and supply predictions to foster discussion and engage with stakeholders on distributing and managing water most effectively. Serious gaming can also help evaluate circular water solutions by integrating all the nexus – energy, agriculture, food production and the water sectors.

As water scarcity bites, we must find better ways to work together and share this valuable resource. Serious gaming is one tool that can help make everyone understand the interdependencies of our complex world and the priorities of others in a collaborative and safe environment.

Enabling stakeholder dialogue and decision making through serious gaming

On 3 March 2022 from 13:00-14:00 (NL local time), the Joint Research Programme (BTO) and Watershare will organise the webinar “Serious Gaming: Enabling Stakeholder Dialogue and Decision Making” as part of a “Sharing International Experiences on Water Supply” webinar series. The webinar will present various serious games in water supply that can enable water utilities to better interact both internally with their operations and processes and externally with their customers and stakeholders to better manage their systems while also developing a good understanding and consensus with their stakeholders on water uses and allocation. You can register for the webinar here.

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