Announcement: DiGRA Nordic 2018

Nordic DiGRA 2018 Call for Papers

“Subversion, Transgression, and Controversy in Play”

University of Bergen, Norway, Nov 28-30, 2018

Video games have a reputation of being rebellious, often being the target of controversies and criticism for their inclusion of excessive and speculative content, as well as for the opportunities for players to engage in subversive practices. Today video games are no longer a subcultural medium, but are addressing the mainstream as well as diverse subcultures. Also, analogue genres such as board games and role-playing games are becoming more visible for a broader audience. As games mature as a medium, there is also a growing expectation that games should be able to tackle difficult content in a meaningful way, for instance by provoking the player into reflecting upon what they have just encountered, what it means and how they feel about it in the context of play. In this conference, we are focusing on subversive play practices, the engagement with controversial topics, and the debate about games and the freedom of expression.

This call has focus on subversion, transgression, and controversy in games and play but also invites submissions on a range of topics relating to research on both digital and analogue games, including, but not limited to the following:

  •   Game cultures
  •   Player studies
  •   Minority gamers
  •   Gender and gaming
  •   Games and freedom of expression
  •   Games and representation
  •   Game content
  •   Research methods
  •   Game controversies
  •   Subversive gameplay practices
  •   Game design
  •   Game journalism
  •   Game production and industry studies

Review process: The conference accepts the following submissions:

  • full papers (4000-6000 words excluding references), which will be handled in blind peer review.
  • extended abstracts (800-1000 words excluding references)
  • workshop proposals (800-1000 words excluding references)
  • panels of 3-5 presenters (800-1000 words excluding references per participant, with a 100-word biography of each participant)

Full papers and extended abstracts will be subject to a double-blind peer review. Panels and workshops will be reviewed by the organizing committee. All submissions must use the Nordic DiGRA 2018 submission template. All word and page limits exclude references, and references are expected for full papers and extended abstracts.

All submissions will be handled through, which will be opened for submissions to DiGRA Nordic 2018 no later than June 01, 2018.

Deadline for all submissions is August 13, Aug 26, 2018.

call for papers

CfP: British DiGRA 2018 (14th – 15th June 2018), Staffordshire University, Stoke on Trent

Call for Papers (published 19/2/2018)

British DiGRA 2018

The second annual conference of British DiGRA.

14th – 15th June 2018

Staffordshire University, Stoke on Trent

The Medium is the Game

Since 2003 and the first DiGRA convention in 2003, we have seen a huge change in the ways that Games Studies understands itself and has conveyed itself as a discipline to (and sometimes within) other critical media. This conference takes as its theme the media of the game, playfully repositioning the 2018 DiGRA theme of ‘The Game is the Message’.

We welcome submissions that move beyond digital gaming, for example submissions relating to boardgames LARP, pervasive games or other forms of analog gaming.

We actively encourage early scholars and PhD candidates, as well as more established voices.

Submissions should consider, but not be restricted to, the following topics in this light:

  • ·         - Revisiting Games as Inter/Multidisciplinary subject
  • ·         - Gaming as Media
  • ·         - Representation in Games
  • ·         - Playfulness and the Medium of Games (Why/Not so Serious…?)
  • ·         - Building games
  • ·         - Pedagogical practice and gaming
  • ·         - Game design/development/theory – the un/holy? trinity
  • ·         - Changes in gaming culture
  • ·         - After the Storm (post gamergate theory)
  • ·         - Games production as critical medium
  • ·         - eSports theory

We welcome the following submission types:

Full papers, of 5000 – 7000 words, to be presented as papers in a panel session.

A template for full papers is here -

Abstracts of 500 words, to be presented in a series of quickfire round table sessions.

Please follow the relevant areas of the template, including Abstract, Keywords and References.

Workshops to last approx half a day – to be submitted as precis of approx 500 – 1000 words underlining core objectives and aims.

Discussion panels – to be submitted as precis of approx 500 – 1000 words underlining core objectives and aims.

Please submit work to by 31st March 2018. Papers and abstracts should be anonymised, but please make sure you identify yourself in the e-mail so that we can respond when the paper has been reviewed.

Acceptance of papers 14th April 2018

Selected proceedings will be published in a special edition of ToDiGRA, in second quarter 2019.

We have decided to charge a small attendance fee of £25 to cover costs. Any surplus funding will be carried over to future BDiGRA events. An eventbrite with details of this will be forthcoming.

All attendees are expected to abide by the BDiGRA Inclusivity Policy -


DiGRA 2018 – The Game is the Message – CFP

The Game is the Message
July 25-28, 2018
Campus Luigi Einaudi, Università di Torino, Turin, Italy
Lungo Dora Siena, 100 A, 10153 Turin, Italy
Conference chairs: Riccardo Fassone and Matteo Bittanti
Games have long since moved out of the toy drawer, but our understanding of them can still benefit from seeing them in a wider context of mediated meaning-making. DiGRA 2018 follows Marshall McLuhan, and sees games as extensions of ourselves. They recalibrate our senses and redefine our social relationships. The environments they create are more conspicuous than their content. They are revealing, both of our own desires and of the society within which we live. Their message is their effect. Games change us.
To explore this change, we invite scholars, artists and industry to engage in discussions over the following tracks:
- Platforms
Game platforms invite new textualities, new technologies and new networks of power relations. Game structures, their integration with and use of the technology, as well as the affordances and restrictions offered by the platforms on which they live, influence our experience of them.
- Users
Games invite new relations between their users, and players strive for and achieve new modes of perception. This reconfigures our attention, and establishes new patterns and forms of engagement.
- Meaning-making
The connection between a game and its content is often interchangeable – a game is clearly recognizable even if the surface fiction is changed. But games still produce meanings and convey messages. We ask, what are the modes of signification and the aesthetic devices used in games? In this context we particularly invite authors to look at games that claim to be about serious topics or deal with political and social issues.
- Meta-play
The playing of the game has become content, and we invite authors to explore spectatorship, streaming, allied practices and hybrid media surrounding play and the players. How can we describe and examine the complex interweaving of practices found in these environments?
- Context
Games are subject to material, economic and cultural constraints. This track invites reflection on how these contingencies as well as production tools, industry and business demands and player interventions contribute to the process of signification.
- Poetics
Games are created within constraints, affordances, rules and permissions which give us a frame in which games generate meaning. Games have voice, a language, and they do speak. This is the poetics of games, and we invite our fellows to explore and uncover it.
- General
Games tend to break out of the formats given them, and so for this track we invite the outstanding abstracts, papers and panels on alternative topics to the pre-determined tracks.
We invite full papers, 5000 – 7000 words plus references using the DiGRA 2018 submission template (, extended abstracts (from 500 words, maximum 1000, excluding references), and panel submissions (1000 words excluding references, with a 100 word biography of each participant). Full papers will be subject to a double-blind peer review. Extended abstracts will be blinded and peer reviewed by committees organised by the track chairs. Panels will be reviewed by the track chairs and the program chairs. General inquiries should be addressed to Riccardo Fassone – riccardo.fassone AT Artist contributions, industry contributions, performances or non-standard presentations should be addressed to Matteo Bittanti  – matteo.bittanti AT .
Submission will be opened December 1st, 2017, and the final deadline for submission is January 31st 2018. The URL for submissions is .
Program chairs are
Martin Gibbs, martin.gibbs AT, University of Melbourne, Australia
Torill Elvira Mortensen, toel AT, IT University of Copenhagen, Denmark
Important dates:
Submission opens: December 1st, 2017
Final submission deadline: January 31st, 2018
Results from reviews: March 1st, 2018
Early registration deadline: March 15th, 2018
Reviewed and rewritten full papers final deadline: April 15th, 2018

Call for Papers – DiGRA Italia: Made in Italy – Roma, 15 December 2017

We are happy to announce DiGRA Italia‘s next conference!
The main theme for this event is Made in Italy: we are going to investigate the production, consumption, history and criticism of video games in/about/around Italy. We are interested in contributions on:
- History and frontiers of video game development within the country
- Reception studies and subculture theories on the Italian video game scene
- Discourses surrounding video games on national mainstream media
- Representation of Italian history and culture within video games
- Players and audiences: fan cultures, YouTubers, mainstream and hardcore gaming
- Preservation of video game texts in Italy: museums, emulation, archives
Submission deadline: 6th October.
While the theme of the conference might sound (pen)insular, the Call for Paper is open to submissions in English and by international scholars.
Our hosting institution is VIGAMUS, the video game museum in Rome, Italy, which is in itself worth a visit if you are travelling from abroad.
The conference is the second national event this year from the Italian DiGRA section. Our first meeting at IULM, in Milan, in May 2017, proved to be successful beyond our expectations. We are organising a second conference to gather the growing number of researchers, practitioners, artists and teachers who work with video games in the country, as well as international scholars interested in work on the Italian field of production, consumption and representation. Game studies in Italy are gaining momentum, and it is a splendid time to join in!
For further information, please write at
call for papers

2017 DiGRA Distinguished Scholars

Since DiGRA’s founding in 2003, game studies has grown into a large, interdisciplinary community of researchers around the world. These researchers have worked to advance the field of game studies in multiple ways, including through the development of rigorous scholarship, the establishment of game studies and game development programs at multiple colleges and universities, and the continued growth of our field. In response, DiGRA recognizes senior scholars who have been at the forefront of such actions including significant contributions made to DiGRA itself as an organization.

We are happy to announce that two additional world-class researchers have been elected to the group for 2017: Dr. Jennifer Jenson of York University and Dr. T.L. Taylor of MIT.

Dr. Jennifer Jenson is the Director of the Institute for Research on Digital Learning and a Professor of Pedagogy and Technology in the Faculty of Education at York University, Canada. She, along with Suzanne de Castell founded the Canadian Game Studies Association ( as well as its journal, Loading ( Additionally, she was part of the DiGRA conference organizing team that brought DiGRA to North America for the first time (Vancouver, B.C.) in 2005. She has published on games and learning, gender and gameplay, the design and implementation of games in formal school settings, and on games as pathways to computational skills. She is currently the director of a large, Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities research grant that is focused on intervening in the toxic, misogynist spaces of game making and game culture (

Dr. T.L. Taylor is Professor of Comparative Media Studies at MIT. She is a qualitative sociologist (Brandeis University, 2000) who has focused on internet and game studies for over two decades. Her research explores the interrelations between culture, social practice, and technology in online leisure environments.Her book Raising the Stakes: E-Sports and the Professionalization of Computer Gaming (MIT Press, 2012) chronicles the rise of e-sports and professional computer gaming. She is also the author of Play Between Worlds: Exploring Online Game Culture (MIT Press, 2006) which used her multi-year ethnography of EverQuest to explore issues related to massively multiplayer online games. Ethnography and Virtual Worlds: A Handbook of Method, her co-authored book on doing ethnographic research in online multi-user worlds, was published by Princeton University Press (2012). She is currently at work on a book about game live-streaming (under contract with Princeton University Press).Dr. Taylor also serves as Director of Research for AnyKey, an organization dedicated to supporting and developing fair and inclusive esports.

You can see the complete list of Distinguished Scholars here:

Please join me in congratulating Dr. Jenson and Dr. Taylor on their achievements.

All the best,


DiGRA Flanders: Ghent, Belgium (June 6, 2017)

We are happy to invite anyone in or near Belgium to the upcoming DiGRA Flanders meeting in Ghent. These meetings are intended for everyone currently conducting or interested in research into digital games. Local DiGRA meetings provide a way for researchers to share their research in a formal presentation; as well as an informal setting in which to meet colleagues with joint interests.

This year, the DiGRA Flanders meeting will be held in Ghent, in De Krook (Co-creatie lab) on June 6th, from 12:00 to 17:00. Six speakers will present their research:

12:00-13:00: Walk-in and introduction by Lars de Wildt
13:00: Prof. Stef Aupers (KUL); Iulia Coanda (KUL); & Cindy Krassen (KUL). Games of Social Control: A sociological study of ‘addiction’ to Massively Multi-Player Online Role-Playing Games.
13:30: Bert van der Hoogerstraete (Eurogamer Benelux) Newsgames. Where Games and Journalism Meet.
14:00: Rowan Daneels (KUL) Antonius J. van Rooij (Trimbos Instituut); Joyce Koeman (KUL); & Jan Van Looy (UGent). “Should I stay or Should I Go?” Exploring the determinants of player cessation in digital games.
14:30 Break
15:00: Laura Herrewijn (UGent); Steffi De Jans (UGent); Veroline Cauberghe (UGent); & Liselot Hudders (UGent) – “Game yourself advertising literate!”: A series of serious mini-games aimed at enhancing children’s advertising literacy
15:30: Tobi Smethurst (UGent). Unmanned: Playing America’s Drone Wars
16:00: Magda Praet (UGent); & Annemie Desoete (UGent) Een voorsprongbenadering bij kleuters in functie van (voorbereidend en aanvankelijk) wiskundeonderwijs; het kan!
16:30 – 17:00: Closing Q&A and Discussion

After the Q&A, there will be the possibility to go for drinks and dinner (at your own expense).
At 19:30, there is also a “Kraks @ De Krook“-event on the topic of combining health and technology (in Dutch), for those who are interested.

DiGRA Flanders is a chapter of the international Digital Games Research Association (DiGRA). DiGRA is the association for academics and professionals who research digital games and associated phenomena. We aim to encourage high-quality research on games, and to promote collaboration and dissemination of work by our members. In order to achieve this goal, we organize research meetings – of which DiGRA Flanders is a local effort. The topics that are discussed are always derived from the various academic disciplines that study digital games, ranging from the social sciences to design research, software engineering, cultural studies and philosophy.

The meeting is free, but registration is required. We hope to see you there, and that you will join us for drinks afterwards.

Kind regards,
On behalf of DiGRA Flanders,
Lars de Wildt & Jasmien Vervaeke


DiGRA 2017 Early-Bird Registration, deadline closing soon

This is the final reminder that the early bird registration deadline for DiGRA 2017 is the 4th of May 2017 (Thursday!!).
Please register here:

We are extremely excited to welcome you to Melbourne for an incredibly exciting DiGRA! In addition to the amazing conference program, early-bird registration for DiGRA 2017 includes attendance at all social events (including the fully catered main conference party at the venue on July 4), morning/afternoon tea, a delicious lunch on the three days of the main conference (4-6th July), attendance at the workshops, and eligible breakfasts.

More details available here -


DiGRA UK board election

Dear all,
The ballot for the DiGRA UK Board has now been posted. Candidate details are posted below, and will also be added to our social media.
If you are NOT attending on May 5th, and are a regular attendee of DiGRA events in the UK, please use the online survey monkey link to vote.
For those who are attending the DiGRA UK event, voting will take place before the DiGRA meeting, and the Board will be announced at the meeting.

You may vote for as many candidates in any given category as you want.
‘No Award’ should be used if you feel that the candidate should NOT be elected.
You may also abstain from the vote.
For online votes, the voting closes at midnight UK time, May 4th.



Name: Esther MacCallum-Stewart

Associate Professor in Games Studies, Staffordshire University

Position Applied for: Chair

I have previously been the Vice Chair of DiGRA for four years, and served as a Board Member for DiGRA. In the past I have also acted as a central point for the organisation of national events for DiGRA UK, and would look to taking this forward to a future International DiGRA event (potentially in 2021). As Chair of the DiGRA UK board, I would have a specific remit to increase the profile of gaming academia through actions like the discussion of how UK academics submit their work under the Research Excellence Framework (and beyond), and via liaison with industry partners. Alongside the parent organisation, I share the desire to make DiGRA an inclusive, supportive environment for all members and attendees of our events.

My research interests include players and the narratives they tell about gaming, which has extended across several gaming genres including videogames, live action roleplaying and boardgaming. I have also written widely about gender and sexuality in gaming.


Matthew Barr,

University of Glasgow

Vice Chair

I’m a lecturer at Glasgow, where I convene the game studies course, and the founding editor of the peer reviewed student game studies journal, Press Start. I also lecture at Glasgow Caledonian University, where I teach on the games development programme, currently leading the Game Content Design and Interactive Storytelling modules. My research examines how games may be used to develop skills and competencies in players. I believe strongly in creating opportunities for all, from students just getting started in game studies to those from under-represented groups, and I enjoy great working relationships with colleagues from academia and industry across Scotland.


Nia Wearn

Staffordshire University


My name is Nia Wearn and I’m a Senior Lecturer in Games Design at Staffordshire University. I have an excellent track record in organising research groups and managing members in a variety of contexts. I’m also already manager of the Digra UK Facebook page and other community ventures in social media, and I’ve experience in organising conferences and events. I am organised and capable of maintaining clear with communications with members. I believe strongly in the aims of Digra UK and I would be excited about being its secretary.


Carina Assunção

University of Edinburgh

Student Officer

My name is Carina Assunção, I’m a master’s student at the University of Edinburgh. This is my candidacy for Student Officer of DiGRA UK.

I’m highly motivated to help disseminate game studies and encourage students to contribute to this field. With a background in Psychology and currently studying STS, I understand first-hand what it means to do game studies without being in a games department. I know the look of surprise when I say my research interests to fellow students. I believe much can still be done to increase games studies’ reputation among students.

Name: Marco Benoît Carbone

Affiliations: University College London (PhD Candidate); University of the Arts, London (Associate Lecturer); London South Bank University (Sessional Researcher)

Position: Board Member

My research track in digital games includes papers, edited journal issues, and forthcoming publications. I have focused on the emergence of video games, their critique, and their relations with film, subcultural theory and anthropology. I am one of the founding members and editors of GAME Journal, and the founder of its current publisher, LUDICA. I am also a professional journalist, and I am particularly interested in public engagement via the academia. My PhD work (nearing completion) covers cultural studies and historiography, and I aim to pursue further research in humanities-informed approaches and issues of cultural appropriation.


Dr Sonia Fizek,

Abertay University

Board Member

Dr Sonia Fizek has been an active games and digital media scholar for the past 9 years. She has worked as a researcher and lecturer at various institutions in the UK, Germany and Poland. Currently she holds a lecturer position at the School of Arts, Media and Computer Games at Abertay University. She is also an associate editor of the Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds. She would like to apply for the board member position of the DiGRA UK chapter.


Dr Paolo Ruffino

Lecturer in Media Studies, University of Lincoln, UK

Board Member

I am writing to apply to the position of board member at DiGRA UK. I also give my availability for any other vacant position within the board.

I have been researching and teaching in the field of game studies at higher education institutions since 2010. I have also been an active member of DiGRA since 2013, participating and presenting at the international conferences. In 2015 I have co-organised the DiGRA conference at Leuphana University. In 2016 I have started another local chapter, DiGRA Italia. If elected, I would contribute with my experience and take initiative in the organisation of conferences, meetings and events, and by curating the relations with the international DiGRA.