TRUST IN PLAY: European School for Urban Game Designers is a capacity building project coupled with a research trajectory on interdisciplinary cultural collaboration and focused on an important social issue: trust in modern European cities. Over the past decade, a vibrant scene of creators has been actively involved with an emerging creative genre: urban play. Although original and thought-provoking, produced games do not seem to have long-lasting affect, with their creators lacking the means necessary to generate sustainable income. Recognizing their potential to address urban issues in an innovative way, TRUST IN PLAY empowers urban game creators with new artistic and business skills, through a collaborative process of interdisciplinary exchange. Participants receive training, produce and present new works and learn how to use technology to ‘up their game’ and accomplish financial sustainability. The trans-sectorial Consortium consists of an international cultural organisation (P1), a university of applied sciences (P2), a community-building platform (P3) and a multicultural and innovation hub (P4), supported by 8 Associated Partners (2 ECoCs, 3 int. playful arts festivals, a public local body, an academic laboratory on new technologies and a socio-cultural NGO). TiP thus involves end-users, experts and decision-makers from across Europe and generates management, artistic and support activities in 6 cities (Athens, Amsterdam, Matera, Plovdiv, Berlin, Tallinn), evolving both on a micro and macro level. It includes extensive research and training, produces a shared methodology and uses digital tools to create an online knowledge repository and an e-market for the urban play sector. With its built-in dissemination potential, TRUST IN PLAY reaches out beyond its direct participants to an extended network of practitioners, theorists and policy-makers, identifying conditions of civic involvement and contributing to the abolishment of mistrust in urban environments.
Photo Credits: Technopolis City of Athens 2019 – Studio Kominis