John Fell OxGame project

Asking questions can be problematic, particularly when there are disparities of outlook, education and nationality. Asking hypothetical questions and considering future scenarios is particularly difficult when working with, for example, rural African farmers (however we suggest such questions are problematic everywhere).

Participatory computer modelling is a technique that has been used to help researchers and communities understand issue and envisage future solutions in these contexts. We propose to use the Modelling4All software to build a toolkit that can be used to construct a diverse range of agent-based computer models with farmers, researchers and policy-makers in Cameroon. Specifically we will focus on climate adaptation strategies with respect to crop selection.

We aim to gain a better understanding of how computer models can be built that enable local participants to consider the status quo, gain insights into how to recover from crises, and envisage the future. In particular we will focus on the design and use of game-like elements that enable participants to express a deep understanding of their world through the way they interact with the model. We want to understand how immersive and playful computing environment can be used to generate meaningful research data and support climate adaptation strategies in Cameroon.

The Modelling4All software allows us to quickly create advanced and transparent agent-based computer models but with fairly modest graphical production values. In the future we hope to create models using more visually appealing platforms such as Lincity, HTML5 and Javascript, and interaction using small mobile devices.

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