The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy is holding a Climate Game Jam to encourage “understanding and awareness of climate-change impacts and solutions.” (Game Jams are a popular way for developers to rapidly design and create video or board games.)

The Climate Game Jam will take place October 2 through October 4. It brings together scientists, educators, and game developers to riff on ideas that will raise awareness of climate change. The best of the bunch will be made available for use in classrooms or other educational places like science centers.

The games can be in any form—digital, tabletop, or more. The goal is ultimately to use games to make our knowledge of climate change accessible to kids and other learners, and to create a fun, immersive way to learn. The prototypes will “span a range of platforms, topics, and audiences.”

There will be multiple Peoples’ Choice Award winners at the Climate Game Jam. After the Game Jam is over, teams can submit their work to be considered for several other honors, including game development support from GlassLab Games.

“Classroom ready” submissions could be included in the Smithsonian Learning Lab and be made available to educators everywhere. Other finalists could be displayed at the National Museum of Natural History in a November showcase.

There are the sites of this year’s Climate Game Jam:

  • Barnard College, New York, NY
  • California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA
  • Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Cottage Lane Elementary School, Blauvelt, NY
  • Harmony High School, Harmony, FL
  • Movable Game Jam at the Museum of the Moving Image, Astoria, NY
  • Paleontological Research Institute’s Cayuga Nature Center, Ithaca, NY
  • University of Oklahoma, National Weather Center, Norman, OK
  • University of Washington, Seattle, WA
  • Utah’s Hogle Zoo, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Ward 4, Milwaukee, WI

You can find out more about each site here. We’re pretty excited to see what comes out of this!

This article was written by

Simone de Rochefort is a game journalist, writer, podcast host, and video producer who does a prolific amount of Stuff. You can find her on Twitter @doomquasar, and hear her weekly on tech podcast Rocket, as well as Pixelkin's Gaming With the Moms podcast. With Pixelkin she produces video content and devotes herself to Skylanders with terrifying abandon.