Games for the SDGs

Progress Namibia - Games for the SDGs
Progress Namibia partners with the Hanns Seidel Foundation, National Youth Council, and the National Youth Coalition on Climate Change, as well as the Namibian University of Science and Technology on 'Games for the SDGs'. This is a series of monthly games aimed at citizen awareness and active participation of and for the Sustainable Development Goals.

It started with the running a World Climate Simulation game in November 2016 in the run-up to the World Climate Summit in Marrakesh, where we thought it would be helpful for (particularly young) people to understand the complexity of the climate negotiation process. The game was a live simulation (through modeling) of how political decisions directly affected temperature rises and connected consequences (such as drought, famine, flooding, and so on). The game was a success, and the team decided to host one monthly in 2017 to engage interested citizens with sustainability and the SDGs.

We have now run six games in total, and we will continue until the end of the year when we will re-assess based on our lessons learned.

These are the games that we have already run towards the 'Games for the SDGs':

The Privilege Walk:
Our February game contributed to learning about all the SDGs, but focused on Goal 10 (Increase Equality), and Goal 1 (End Poverty).

The Harvest Game:
Our March game focused on SDG 14 (Marine resources) and consisted of a quota game to understand the dynamics of the fishing industry. This game was developed by Meadows et al. Systems thinking games.

Debate on Wildlife Crime
Our April debate focused on Goal 15 (Biodiversity) and aimed to internalise the message on the importance of halting biodiversity loss, and trigger discussions around wildlife crimes.

The Paper Bag Game:
Our May game focused on Goal 8 (Decent Jobs) and Goal 10 (Increase Equality), among many others, and allowed a discussion to ensue around understanding the pressures of trying to survive in an economy with massive unemployment and no social security.

The Community-based Decision-making Game:
Our June game focused on a myriad of SDGs, and explored the influence of politics and economics on the environment.

The Food for All Game:
Our July game focused particularly on Goal 15 (Biodiversity) and Goal 2 (End Hunger), among others. The game aimed to create understanding about vanishing resources (in this case, arable land), and getting people to think out of the box. Discussions around food distribution and waste was also an important factor. This game was developed by Meadows et al. Systems thinking games.

Our August game is: Shop till you Drop! This will take place at Democracy House on 1 September, 14:00 to 16:00.