The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO, wants to flip the script and turn mobile games into tools for learning. It's sponsoring a conference in India later this year that will address how to use digital technologies like video games to build more peaceful and sustainable societies, Venture Beat reported earlier Monday.
At the helm is the UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development, or MGIEP.
"Game-based learning provides a promising new pedagogy, which allows learners to proceed at their own pace. UNESCO MGIEP supports research in gaming as it places the learner at the centre of learning by providing an interactive, immersive, multimodal environment," UNESCO MGIEP said on its website.
UNESCO MGIEP is working with the Government of Andhra Pradesh, India, to create this hub for games and digital learning. The hub will offer products and services like educational video games, 3D content, AR, VR, MR modules aligned to curricula, cloud-based content for education, and more.
Here are two of the games from the instituate:
UNESCO MGIEP calls World Rescue a narrative, research-based video game inspired by the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. It harkens to those of us who grew up with Captain Planet. You play through levels set in Kenya, Norway, Brazil, India and China. Along the way you'll meet different characters and help them solve global problems like displacement, disease, deforestation, drought and pollution. You can download the World Rescue game app for Android or iOS.
This game has a very specific audience. Cantor's World is meant for master's level students of economics and sustainability studies and mid-career policy makers, according to the UNESCO MGIEP site. The game is designed to teach players about Inclusive Wealth Index. Cantor's World lets players experiment with policy choices and experience firsthand the tug of war between short-term results and long-term sustainability. Essentially, you're building a country from the ground up and all your choices have consequences for neighboring countries.
You can't download this one as an app, unfortunately. The game is being piloted at universities.