On 25th, 26th and 27th February the GAMBALOA project partners met in the historic university town of Leuven. The British (Nicola Whitton, Clare Hamshire and James Duggan) along with the German (Bernd Remele, Mattias Matic, Rainer Gaupp, and Katja Sustrate) partners were warmly welcomed, fed, watered and kept busy by our Belgian hosts (Nathalie Charlier, Lien Van Der Stock and Evelien Luts).
The purpose of the meeting was to plan and implement the dissemination stage of the project. Dissemination is an increasingly important but typically tricky part of research projects. The partners decided to host an end of project meeting to be held in Berlin in June. The event will bring together a select group of academics and policy and practitioner organisations to engage with three briefing papers on games and motivation, health and business. As everyone is being forced to count the pennies and cents we are going to stream the conference online and enable virtual participation in the event. Watch this space for further details!
This was my first trip abroad with the games-based learning people and it was great to see the effort and care invested in building great working relationships. Nathalie, Lien and Evelien organised a pervasive game where we used Kickbikes to navigate our way around Leuven solving puzzles and then on the next day we worked in teams to make world-famous Belgian pralines.
All of that energy fuelled the discussions of what the partners should work on beyond GAMBALOA. One of the more difficult tasks of developing funding is finding the right partners, especially when it comes to the broader and bigger EU applications. If you don’t have the right partners different perspectives, difficult personalities, and unexplained agendas can prevent anything being achieved when tasks and work packages are divided up and shared. This is why working with such a great bunch of people is a joy and hopefully it will continue with ideas from using games to reduce homophobia because that seems really important, to using Lego… because Lego is awesome! Again, watch this space for further details.