The project aims to increase diversity (including gender, ethnicity, sexuality and function) in the computer games industry so that the industry becomes more inclusive, reflective and innovative, and people feel more comfortable playing and developing more types of computer games. It is a long-term project divided into three steps:
analyses of conditions, obstacles and opportunities for diversity in the games industry;
analyses of game development processes from a diversity perspective;
analyses of game companies’ work environments, including recruitment processes, from a diversity perspective.
Though the project works on local, regional and national levels, it is quickly reaching the international level due to the global nature of the computer games industry.
The project has promoted the inclusion of diverse research topics, portfolios and perspectives: Firstly, by considering the entire game sector and collaborating with representatives from that sector; secondly, by working in an interdisciplinary manner and using a ‘practice analysis’ research method that operates on micro, meso and macro levels.
This project distinguishes itself from others with the scale at which collaboration within the whole innovation system in a specific sector has been implemented (game companies, game education institutes, gaming communities). A central goal is diversity, at all levels, and also all aspects of diversity.
Regular communications on all aspects of the project are shared with representatives from the many different stakeholder groups. In addition, one of the tasks of the non-profit organisation Diversi is to communicate about its work to the computer game sector and to the public, which it does through a website, social media, meet ups and conferences.
Through its use of practice analysis, the project analyses obstacles/risks and opportunities for diversity in the game industry and in game development processes. Reflection on existing beliefs and ways of thinking is done by continuously challenging and exploring the concept of diversity as it applies to the computer games sector.
The main goal of the project is to implement changes in existing structures and systems based on stakeholders’ desire for more diversity. To this end, collaborations with stakeholders have encouraged open communication, which has increased recognition of each other’s needs, concerns and perspectives. In addition, the project continuously redesigns and modifies each step, as well as the aims and scopes, based on internal and external factors.
A main outcome is Diversi, an innovative non-profit organisation that works as a new kind of platform for increasing diversity in the computer game sector. Diversi provides channels and forums for the exchange of knowledge and ideas, supports and creates collaborations, and gives stakeholders the opportunity to recognise and reward each other’s diversity efforts.