How does it feel to save the world, or ruin the planet? Now you can find
out, with the release this week of Game Change Rio, a sophisticated Facebook-based game that
allow people to engage with the sustainability issues of the day. Players can
opt for choices based on real-world data that has not been publicly available so
far. The game has been released just before the Rio+20 conference in June to try
and galvanise people into demanding action from the Rio+20 conference.
Game Change Rio offers a great way to engage with the complexities facing our
planet today. “Once more of us begin to understand the issues involved, we have
a better chance of changing the game,” said Hans Herren, winner of the World
Food Prize in 1995 and founder of Biovision, a Swiss foundation for ecological
development, which commissioned the game.
As you will discover, seeing the demise of ruthlessly polluting industries is just as fun as slaying some fantasy monster and providing water to the inhabitants of an arid strip of land is almost like saving the gorgeous heroine’s life. Image Credit: http:www.gamechangerio.org
The game is great fun too; for example, seeing the demise of ruthlessly
polluting industries is just as fun as slaying some fantasy monster and
providing water to the inhabitants of an arid strip of land is better than
saving the gorgeous heroine’s life. Not only this, but a trip to the Rio
conference in June is the prize for the player with the highest score and weekly
prizes are also available.
Game Change Rio, the idea of Biovision, CodeSustainable and the Millennium
Institute, aims to raise awareness for the issues that need to be addressed if
future generations are to enjoy life on this planet and also proposes solutions
to the problems we are facing.
The Earth Summit, the United Nations Conference held at Rio de Janeiro,
raised the issue of sustainability around 20 years ago, but very little action
has been taken and we are still on the road to disaster.
Sustainability has become a mainstream term, with nations adopting
sustainable policy frameworks, and hardly any company would dare to issue a
mission statement that did not include sustainability. However, these are often
vague, short-term thinking still dominates and the mantra of growth at any cost
still prevails. Most indicators show there is still not enough action behind the
Rio+20 this June was called to address this global inertia and make change
happen after all. But this follow-up conference is up against many vested
interests and only if we all mobilise, can we hope for a change in attitude. “We
developed ‘Game Change Rio’ to get the message to people we might not reach
through other channels,” Herren said. To make it truly global, the game is
available in Chinese, Arabic, Portuguese, Spanish, English, French and German.
Game Change Rio gives you access to real-world data that so far has only been
available to experts and policy makers. Based on the Millennium Institute’s
Green Economy Model, which was commissioned by the United Nations Environment
Programme (UNEP), the game includes all relevant sectors of the world’s economy
and the natural resources available. All the elements of the three key
development dimensions (environment, society and economy) are linked in a unique
System Dynamics model and the effects of different policies are visualized in
their full complexity. The model has over 5,000 indicators, and with the 125
policy cards developed, the game has over 100 million possible outcomes.