Results of the London Science Museum’s project show how powerful games can be in a struggle with ignorance regarding environmental issues.
The main focus of the project, a part of the Climate Week, was to test the effectiveness of games in spreading the knowledge on environmental issues. In addition to gaining data, project encouraged a pro-environmental behaviour in participants. The results prove the effectiveness of games in this area.
According to the project report, nearly 60% of participants stated they had learned new and useful information.
Moreover, they declared that they will implement this knowledge in their home and/or work environment. 59% of the participants felt they could now take actions at home to become more environmentally friendly. Dr Paula Owen in the interview for BBC said that:
The other aspect I am looking at is actually using games but with an environmental twist.
Dr Owen explained that bringing the games and games mechanics into “doom and gloom filled” environmental issues might increase engagement also amongst audience who before had no interest in those problems:
Dr Owen’s team invited project participants to play many different games, from Play Your Eco-Cards Right to Eco-Snakes and Ladders. To test the effectiveness of games, after few months researchers checked the participants’ level of the knowledge.
The project was also good way to check the capabilities of the Eco-Action Trumps card game:
I have a lot of anecdotal evidence of the success of Eco-Action Trumps, but what I need to take this idea further is quantifiable evidence gathered from a wide range of the general public.
The positive results of Dr Owen’s studies prove that games can enhance environmental education methods.