Fixing Broke(n) Governments Through Serious Games
It’s no secret. Local, state and federal governments face budget shortfalls, spending cuts and reduced service—in a political climate that favors gridlock. Serious games have emerged as a viable approach to budgeting that is both participatory and scalable. In this session, we’ll discuss why serious games are a particularly good tool for budgeting and their advantages over alternatives such as deliberative democracy, participatory budgeting, or majority voting through polls. Participants will learn to conduct in-person and online games built specifically for resolving multi-scalar budget problems. These models are based on Budget Games, which we designed and played in San Jose, CA, on Jan. 29, 2011 in which more than 100 community leaders collaboratively re-crafted the city’s proposed budget. Because the game revealed real consensus, San Jose officials were able to act on the game’s results with more confidence than traditional polling.
Luke Hohmann is the founder and CEO of The Innovation Games® Company, the leading provider of seriously fun games that produce seriously great market research results. The author of three books with long titles, Luke’s playfully diverse background of life experiences has uniquely prepared him to design and produce serious games. Luke graduated magna cum laude with a B.S.E. in computer engineering and an M.S.E. in computer science and engineering from the University of Michigan. In addition to data structures and artificial intelligence, he studied cognitive psychology and organizational behavior under such luminaries as Elliot Soloway, Karl Weick, and Dan Dennison. He is also a former United States National Junior Pairs Figure Skating Champion. In his spare time, Luke likes roughhousing with his four kids, his wife’s cooking, and long runs in the Santa Cruz mountains to burn off his wife’s cooking. Luke’s an old school Silicon Valley entrepreneur. Instead of building a company to flip, he’s building a company to change the world. E.B. White is proud!