In collaboration with the CoE-GameCult, SNSUS – Stiftelsen Nordiska Sällskapet för Upplysning om Spelberoende is organising the 12th Nordic Conference on Gambling in Tampere, Finland on 3rd to 5th of June 2019 “Nordic interfaces – gambling and gaming from research to practise”. You can find the conference program here: http://www.snsus.org/program/
The Department of Music, Art and Culture Studies and the Department of History and Ethnology at the University of Jyväskylä present
A lecture by Thomas Malaby (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)
Friday 12 April 2019, 11:00 am – 12:15 pm
University of Jyväskylä, Musica, Building M, Boombox, Seminaarinkatu 15, Finland 40014
Taking inspiration from Weber’s recognition of the relationship between fortune and meaning, in this talk I sketch the path of games under modernity, tracing how this cultural form has transformed from something quite unruly for modern institutions into something they have begun to domesticate. At the same time, I contemplate modernity itself as characterized by the rise of game-like systems, by the contrived and legitimate indeterminacy that characterizes games. On this view, the increased prominence and use of games, especially those that are digitally mediated, is consonant, I suggest, with a particular thread of classical liberal thought as well as raising ethical questions of governance. If any game is in important respects understandable as a domain of contrived contingency that, if done well, is compelling, then the creators and sponsors of games today are in a quite powerful position to architect contingent experiences for us that can generate meanings and subjectivities, and those in accordance with the interest of certain projects. In both familiar and new ways, then, digital games and game-like processes raise questions about ethics and public policy.
Thomas Malaby is a Professor of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. His research interest is in the ever-changing relationships among institutions, unpredictability, and technology, especially as they are realized through games and game-like processes. He has published numerous and widely cited works on the status of games in human experience. Dr. Malaby’s work suggests that the increasing use of digital games by institutions marks a fundamental transition in modern governance. His most recent book, Making Virtual Worlds: Linden Lab and Second Life (2009, Cornell University Press), is an ethnographic examination of a San Francisco high tech firm.
The lecture will be followed by a seminar on “Ritual, Bureaucracy, and Games” with Dr. Malaby and researchers from the Centre of Excellence in Game Culture Studies at 1 pm. Contact Dr. Aleena Chia at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
This is a free event and open to all – no registration required. Please feel free to share this with anyone who may be interested in attending.
The recorded lecture can be viewed online.
Dosentti Pauliina Raento on johtavia rahapelikulttuurin tutkimuksen asiantuntijoita ja hän on aloittanut tammikuussa 2019 tutkimustyön Pelikulttuurien tutkimuksen huippuyksikössä. Hän esiintyi Tieteen päivät 2019 -tapahtumassa “Riippuvuuden rajalla” -sessiossa otsikolla “Vedonlyöjä riskinhallinnan asiantuntijana” – alustuksen tallenne on katsottavissa alta:
A visiting CoE-GameCult scholar lecture took place in 14th November in OASIS at the University of Tampere. The talk was by Jaroslav Švelch, titled “Amateur adaptations of ‘professional’ games: Manic Miner and Flappy in 1980s Czechoslovakia”. Dr Švelch currently works in the University of Bergen, and he has a book coming our in The MIT Press: Gaming the Iron Curtain (see more here: https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/gaming-iron-curtain).
Urban spaces offer a rich environment for a diversity of play practices, from location-based games to parkour and from hopscotch to chess in parks. Historically, cities have offered rich affordances for games and play, but in recent years the spread of ubiquitous and pervasive technology has transformed and diversified public play. The extension of ‘smart’ devices and technologies into the urban environment – smartphones, sensors, and automated systems – open up new possibilities for networked play. At the same time, these platforms also control and constrain human movement and behaviour, sometimes unconsciously through opaque algorithms imposed by city authorities or technology vendors.
Play in public spaces became especially visible after Pokémon Go was launched, after which location-based games arose from margin to mainstream. Public play has also become something municipalities encourage, through games festivals and city-funded game projects. But there are also less visible, secret and norm-defying, forms of play constantly taking place. Spontaneous street activities, urban sports, and small-scale games produce micro-level but nonetheless important impacts on the everyday urban environment.
We are seeking submissions from scholars studying different aspects of urban play. In addition to game studies-oriented research, we particularly invite papers that focus on less visible groups and activities which challenge the way we think about public/urban play and which are not necessarily game-related. Prominent work is done in many fields ranging from player studies to design research and from digital humanities to architecture, urbanism, social sciences and beyond. The seminar encourages contributions relating to all types of urban games and play, be they digital, non-digital, or hybrid.
The possible list of topics includes but is not limited to:
- Playful architecture and urban design
- Smart city, ludic city
- Location-based and augmented reality games
- Histories of play in cities
- Street sports
- Playgrounds, amusement parks, stadiums, and other playful spaces
- Locative educational, tourism, and heritage applications
- Pervasive larp
- Representation and discourses around urban play
- Norm-defying urban play
- Peri-urban and rural play
- Representations of the urban in games
- Playful algorithms of power in cities
- Digital, hybrid, and non-digital urban games
Urban Play is the 15th annual spring seminar organized by Tampere University Game Research Lab. The seminar emphasises work-in-progress submissions, and we strongly encourage submitting late breaking results, working papers, as well as submissions from graduate and PhD students. The purpose of the seminar is to have peer-to-peer discussions and thereby provide support in refining and improving research work in this area. The seminar is organized in collaboration with the Center of Excellence in Game Culture Studies.
The papers to be presented will be chosen based on extended abstract review. Full papers are distributed prior the event to all participants, in order to facilitate discussion. The seminar will be chaired by Professor Frans Mäyrä, and there will be two invited expert commentators, Dr Dale Leorke (University of Tampere) and another commentator to be announced later. The seminar will be held in Vapriikki, the museum center that hosts The Finnish Museum of Games.
The seminar is looking into partnering with a journal so that the best papers would be invited to be further developed for publication in a special journal issue. In the past we have collaborated with Games and Culture, Simulation & Gaming, International Journal of Role-Playing and ToDiGRA journals.
The papers will be selected for presentation based on extended abstracts of 500-1000 words (plus references). Abstracts should be delivered in PDF format. Please use 12 pt Times New Roman, double-spaced, for your text. Full paper guidelines will be provided with the notification of acceptance.
Our aim is that all participants can familiarise themselves with the papers in advance. Therefore, the maximum length for a full paper is 5000 words (plus references). The seminar presentations should encourage discussion, instead of repeating the information presented in the papers. Every paper will be presented for 10 minutes and discussed for 20 minutes.
Submissions should be sent to: email@example.com.
- Abstract deadline: January 18, 2019
- Notification of acceptance: February 4, 2019
- Full Paper deadline: March 25, 2019
- Seminar dates: April 15-16, 2019
See more on https://urbanplayseminar.wordpress.com/.
The Centre of Excellence in Game Culture Studies has started its operation in the beginning of the year, and after hiring several new researchers, the big consortium is now up to full speed.
In 20th August an important event took place, when almost 40 games researchers gathered at Tampere to discuss the goals of the Centre of Excellence and the plans for reaching those goals.
A few more researchers will still join us during the coming months, but its not a common sight to see tens of games researchers, all either employed or affiliated with one research initiative. International reinforcements have been hired to Jyväskylä, Tampere and Turku to strengthen their already strong focus on games research.
There are already plans going ahead, focusing on several specific topics within the CoE GameCult research temes, like studying Overwatch, eSports, live-action role-playing games, and fandoms around games, to name just a few examples of the research underway in the Centre of Excellence.
If you’re interested in what the Centre of Excellence is up to, you can follow us on Twitter, subscribe to this blog’s feed or come see us e.g. in Jyväskylä, in the Seminar on eSports, Exergaming, and Fantasy Leagues (in November 22nd–23rd, 2018).
The CoE-GameCult was strongly present in the Digital Games Research Association’s (DiGRA) 2018 conference, which took place in Turin, Italy, in 25-28 August, 2018.
There were over ten CoE-GameCult researchers talking and presenting their work in the conference, including Frans Mäyrä, Olli Sotamaa, Jaakko Suominen, Aleena Chia, Jan Svelch, Katriina Heljakka, Heikki Tyni, Niklas Nylund, Maria Ruotsalainen, Maria B. Garda, Jonne Arjoranta, and Jaakko Stenros.
Here is link to the conference program: https://easychair.org/smart-program/DIGRA2018/.
The new ICory (Intelligent Customer-driven Solution for Orthopedic and Pediatric Surgery Care) research project’s kick-off meeting was held on 28th May in Helsinki. As a new, CoE-GameCult affiliated project, ICory is about digitization and gamification of patient journey for orthopedic and pediatric surgery. The Game Research Lab of University of Tampere is part of the research consortium and will focus on the gamification aspect.
During the kick-off meeting we had the opportunity to visit the New Children’s Hospital in Helsinki. Here is a picture from the main entrance lobby.
The CoE GameCult researchers were active in organising the Pelitutkimuksen päivä 2018 – the annual conference of games research in Finland. Professor Raine Koskimaa chaired the event in University of Jyväskylä in 4th May 2018, and the special theme of the event was focused on eSports. The annual thesis awards were delivered there, and the day started with the Spring meeting of the Finnish Society for Game Research (Suomen pelitutkimuksen seura).
The full program is here (in Finnish): https://www.jyu.fi/hytk/fi/laitokset/mutku/tutkimus/konferenssit-seminaarit/pelitutkimuksen-paiva-2018.
Below are some photos from the event:
The CoE-GameCult co-organises the Making Games seminar, taking place in Tampere, 23-25 April 2018. The seminar website and program is at: https://makinggamesseminar.wordpress.com/programme/.
Some photos from the event are below: