CIWEM ‘The Environment’ – Water Security Games

Dr Michaela Bray, WISE CDT supervisor at Cardiff University, has an article in CIWEM’s March 2019 ‘The Environment’ magazine. The article, entitled ‘Games Without Frontiers’, focuses on the student “Challenge” from Cardiff’s Summer School and the developments that have taken place since then. 

For this particular “Challenge”, students were asked to design an educational board game around the theme of water security and were assessed on three categories: playability, learning outcomes and clear rules. Six innovative games were created:

  • Water Quest
  • Circulate
  • The Water Board
  • Riverlution
  • Panta Rhei
  • Hydropolis

The board games were judged by an expert academic panel, with all six scoring highly on the educational criteria, incorporating real-world tensions between economic and social development and their environmental implications.  The winning game was…..Hydropolis. 

Designing, creating and testing these board games offered students a different way of thinking about the water security problem. It also encouraged them to explore new ways to engage with non-scientific/engineering audiences about difficult issues.

Following on from the Summer School “Challenge”, the WISE CDT now plans to develop these board games as an educational tool for schools in Cardiff, Bath, Bristol and Exeter. 

The winning game, Hydropolis.