Book Chapter Details
Mandatory Fields
Kerr, Aphra.
2021 Unknown
Independent Videogames: Cultures, Networks, Techniques and Politics
Decoding and Recoding Game jams and Independent Game Making Spaces for Inclusion
In Press
Optional Fields
game jams gender inclusion
While research on gamejams internationally has proposed that they can be a useful context for informal learning, networking between indie developers, and innovation, in this chapter we argue that they can also be perceived, and experienced, as exclusionary spaces by those who identify as women, and individuals who are outside of existing game making communities. Research on gamejams in two different cities in Ireland for the Refiguring Innovation in Games project found that these events overwhelmingly attracted a young male demographic with existing programming skills. Since 2016 the authors have designed and run six adult ‘female friendly’ diversity in games workshops in Ireland to encourage inclusive informal education and innovation. They took place at weekends in co-working innovation centres and formal educational settings provided by our partners. This chapter reflects on the recruitment, participation, and outcome of our workshops - but in particular reflects on the explicit and implicit spatial and technical barriers faced by participants and organisers. While contemporary discourses and industry data seem to support the democratisation of games production, contemporary software for game development and available learning spaces impose restrictions that continue to marginalise and impose a technicity that is gendered, classed and raced. This chapter argues that explicit inclusion strategies are needed to address persist structures of exclusion in informal and formal games education.
Ruffino, P.
Grant Details
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada