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Games for Change Festival, May 27 - 29, New York City

2009 Sixth Annual Games for Change Festival, May 27 - 29, in New York City

This is the only event dedicated to the exciting new movement of video games for social change - games about poverty, global conflict, climate change. Called "the Sundance of video games" for "socially-responsible game-makers" we're building a new genre of video game - games to change the world - for the better.

The 2009 festival features an Opening Keynote by Pulitzer-Prize winning author and world-changing New York Times journalist Nicholas Kristof who will give us a sneak peek into his new book, television show and video game! His columns have often focused on global health, poverty and gender issues in the developing world. In particular, since 2004 he has written dozens of columns about Darfur and visited the area ten times.

Mr. Kristof and Ms. WuDunn are authors and their next book, "Half the Sky: From Oppression to Opportunity for Women Worldwide," will be published by Knopf in September.

Other festival highlights include a fireside chat with preeminent games and learning scholars Jim Gee and Henry Jenkins; an interactive game design session by leading game designer Eric Zimmerman; and a closing keynote by Lucy Bradshaw, Executive Producer of Spore, and one of the 10 Most Influential Women In Games.

And don't miss our Games Expo, where festival-goers can see and play these new games firsthand in a lively and media-friendly reception. And this year will see the first-ever Knight News Game Award, sponsored the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Come see how games are being used to address key events and issues in the news!

Back by popular demand "Let the Games Begin: 101 Workshop on Making Social Issue Games," our pre-festival day-long workshop for newbies on May 27th! (2008 MacArthur Foundation's DML Competition award-winner) This workshop is a soup-to-nuts tutorial on the fundamentals of social issue games. Vital to those who are new to designing learning games but passionate about social issues, the workshop features leading experts on game design, fundraising, evaluation, youth participation, distribution, and press strategies. The 101 Workshop on Making Social Issue Games is made possible through the generous support of the AMD Foundation.

Games for Change Festival panelists and speakers include:

Ian Bogost, CEO of Persuasive Games and author of Unit Operations: An Approach to Videogame Criticism

Heather Chaplin, journalist (NPR, NYT) and author of Smartbomb: The Quest for Art, Entertainment, and Big Bucks in the Videogame Revolution.

Mary Flanagan, Director of the Tiltfactor Lab Tracy Fullerton, Assistant Professor, USC, Interactive Media

Judith Helfand, Independent filmmaker

Frank Lantz, CEO Area Code; Acting Director, NYU Game Center

John Nordlinger, Senior Research Manager, Microsoft

Ian Rowe, Deputy Director at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, former head of Public Affairs at mTV

Katie Salen, Executive Director, Institute of Play; Associate Professor, Design and Technology Department, Parsons The New School for Design

Seth Scheisel, New York Times game critic and technology journalist

Kurt Squire, Assistant Professor at University of Wisconsin-Madison

Constance Steinkuehler, Assistant Professor Assistant Professor Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Madison Clive Thompson

For more information and to register, visit gamesforchange.org


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