GameHeArtS (Games, Heritage, Arts, & Sport): the economic, social, and cultural value of the European videogame ecosystem

Videogames matter—quite clearly in economic terms, but arguably more importantly in social and cultural terms. GAMEHEARTS focuses on the current and potential economic, social, and cultural value of the European video-game industry ecosystem (EVGIE), and in particular, its wider current and potential importance for social and cultural life as a driver for innovation and increased audience diversity and wellbeing through its place in cultural heritage, the arts, and sport.

Working across four stages and seven work packages, the Universities of Tampere, Salford, Vienna, Breda University of Applied Sciences, and Wroclaw University of Economics and Business will work in a co-creative partnership with Ubisoft and other major videogame partners and associations (including with the agreed cooperation of ISFE and EGDF) to explore current and future trends in the EVGIE. The main aim of the project is to maximise the value of the EVGIE within the wider social context of the creative and cultural industries (CCI). More specifically, Gamification Group is investigating the impact of videogames on shaping a more inclusive society.

The outcome of this innovative project will be to provide an insightful map into future developments in the videogame industry and its connections to the wider CCI, identify policy recommendations, and set out the ways in which the EVGIE can and should grow and develop and where it could act as a key driver for greater economic growth, job creation, social and cultural cohesion, and physical and mental wellbeing. This will also lead to specific and strategic industry examples and recommendations of how deeper partnerships between the EVGIE and the wider CCI could lead to pathways for acceleration of growth (e.g., through value transfer and co-creation and application of new and novel research) and as leverage for new innovation (e.g., with whom to have a co-creation relationship and who to invite to co-innovation processes).

GameHearts is a three-year, EU-funded research project dedicated to the economic, social, and cultural value of the European videogame ecosystem (HORIZON-CL2-2023-HERITAGE-01-06, grant agreement 101132543). The project at Tampere University is led by Dr. Ana Carolina Tomé Klock and Prof. Juho Hamari.