Call: International Conference on the Social Aspects of Digital Gaming


The social side of gaming: International Conference on the Social Aspects of Digital Gaming

Thursday 21 July to Saturday 23 July 2011

University Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany


In the past decade, digital games have become a widely accepted form of media entertainment, even outside the traditional ‘core gamer’ segment. In tandem with this shift into the mainstream media market, we have seen an increasing interest in ‘social’ multiplayer gaming activities, from both the audience and the gaming industry.

The development of social games is of great academic interest. Wide-ranging studies have been initiated to investigate the sociality of virtual worlds, massively multiplayer role playing games (MMORPGs), multiplayer shooters, e-sports, and cooperation in party-oriented console gaming, yet games research remains a relatively new field. Despite explosive growth in the field over the past decade, many aspects of social gaming still remain largely unexplored.

This international conference, titled The Social Side of Gaming and hosted by the University Hohenheim (Germany), will take a closer look at the various forms of human interaction in digital games. The aim of the conference is to bring together researchers from a variety of disciplines interested in social interaction in games, including (but not limited to) the fields of communication research, media studies, sociology, psychology, education studies, and economics.

Papers and presentations will address one or more of the following conference topics:

  • Theoretical and empirical approaches to social interaction in digital games
  • Forms of communication in digital games
  • Interaction among co-located gamers
  • Game communities and cultures, social interaction in and around games (e.g., clans and online discussions)
  • Avatars, identification, and self-representation in virtual worlds
  • Development of interaction rules and social norms, including questions of ethics, morality, economy & justice in digital games
  • Entertainment through social interaction
  • Design and implementation of social interaction
  • Methodology of research on social interaction in games
  • Violent interactions, griefing, and sexual harassment in digital games
  • Excessive use and forms of addiction related to social aspects of gaming


An extended abstract of no more than 3 pages in length (7500 characters in total) should be prepared for blind review as a Word file (.doc or .docx). When submitting the abstract, please include a separate cover page including the following contact details:

  • paper title
  • name
  • department/organization
  • postal address
  • e-mail address

The abstract should provide a clear outline of the status of the proposed work (for empirical studies: status of data collection and analysis) and confirm that the research will be ready for presentation at the conference. By sending an abstract, the author(s) agrees to personally present the research at the conference.

The abstract should be sent to the organizing committee by email (; before 28 February 2011. The double-blind review process will take place during March, with the results returned on 31 March 2011. Further information on the conference program, including keynote speakers, will soon be available on the conference website at


  • The ERC (European Research Council) project group The Social Fabric of Virtual Life
  • The Sociology of Media Communication section of the German Communication Association (DGPuK)

Additional Information

The conference language is English. The conference proceedings will be published after the conference. Papers selected for the proceedings volume should be prepared for a book publication until October 2011.

ISPR Presence News

Search ISPR Presence News: