Integrative and collaborative approaches in river basin management increase complexity, not just from a technical, but also from a management and governance point of view. Learning environments can help river basin management actors to deal with this complexity by exchanging their perspectives and deciding on collective action. In this project, we are developing a serious gaming environment – a learning environment that uses a serious game as a facilitation tool – where actors can collaboratively discuss, negotiate and test integral management strategies. A serious gaming environment offers actors simplified insight into a complex system. At the same time, a serious gaming environment offers actors a safe and level playing field to experiment with other actors and learn from each other.
Management phase: Evaluation & Adjustment |
Management goals: Maintenance Efficiency | Stakeholder participation |
This project intends:
- To develop a serious game that includes both the socio-political and the technical complexity
- To facilitate a learning environment for river management actors to collaboratively discuss, negotiate and test management strategies.
Temporal scale: Project milestones |
- Human-centered design approach, deploying methods such as interviews, co-design and participatory design
- Iterative development of the serious gaming environment, deploying early prototyping and structured evaluation
Data-collection methods: Interviews |
Main progress and next steps
- An interview study focused on determining the goal of the Virtual River based on the current challenges in Dutch river management. Thereby, the serious game focuses on the need of creating flexibility in a controlled river system and sustaining the integrated approach in the maintenance of floodplains.
- Currently (January 2018), a cycle involving a first, playable prototype is completed. In this cycle, the Virtual River was developed as a board game to test and evaluate some main elements and game rules we intend to implement and refine in further prototypes. Testing these elements and rules in a board game early on enabled us to see whether these could work as intended and what the perceived complexity of players on these are.
Key study areas: Ijssel river (The Netherlands) | Nederrijn-Lek river (The Netherlands) | Waal river (The Netherlands) |
Gelderse Poort area (the Netherlands)
Last modified: 01/07/2018
prof. dr. Suzanne Hulscher
Prof. dr. ir. Mascha van der voort
Users’ perspectives about the potential usefulness of online storylines to communicate river research to a multi-disciplinary audience
14/08/2018 by Juliette Cortes Arevalo et al.
Contains: Journal publication