Call: Meaningful Play 2016

International Academic Conference on Meaningful Play
October 20-22, 2016
East Lansing, Michigan

Deadline: July 31, 2016

Whether designed to entertain or to achieve more “serious” purposes, games have the potential to impact players’ beliefs, knowledge, attitudes, emotions, cognitive abilities, physical and mental health, and behavior.

Meaningful Play 2016 is a conference about theory, research, and game design innovations, principles and practices. Meaningful Play brings scholars and industry professionals together to understand and improve upon games to entertain, inform, educate, and persuade in meaningful ways.

The conference will include thought-provoking keynotes from leaders in academia and industry, peer-reviewed paper presentations, panel sessions (including academic and industry discussions), innovative workshops, roundtable discussions, and exhibitions of games and prototypes.

While any topic related to games for entertainment and learning is appropriate to submit to Meaningful Play 2016, topics of particular interest include:

1) Exploring meaningful applications of games

  • Games to change attitudes, beliefs, or behaviors (including social impact games and health games)
  • Games to stimulate creativity or innovation
  • Games to build social skills
  • Games to advertise and persuade
  • Games to exercise specific cognitive functions
  • Games to explore personal beliefs and help make decisions
  • Games to build knowledge and skills (games for learning)
  • Serious games for history and cultural heritage learning
  • Games to promote civic, social, and humanitarian organization and participation

2) Issues in designing meaningful play

  • Virtual reality and meaningful play
  • Game design for specific audience segments
  • Player types and play styles
  • Story and storytelling in games
  • Competitive and cooperative play (single player, multiplayer and massively multiplayer)
  • Balancing entertainment and serious goals
  • Repurposing entertainment games for serious purposes (and vice versa)
  • Unintended and unexpected effects of games
  • Using psychology and neuroscience to design and understand games
  • Emerging design research methods to help create better games
  • Measuring game impacts
  • Innovative techniques and technologies for the design of meaningful play (e.g. game mechanics, reward systems, and user interfaces)
  • Gamification

The deadline for submissions AND games is July 31, 2016.

Complete details on the conference are available at:

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