From Game to Dynamic Simulation: Collective Learning in Maps and Pictures

Simple Model of Basin to support discussion- used for first workshop

As simple model of the situation under study is presented to stakeholders well acquainted with the issue. Here we’re concerned about flooding, and the interaction between agriculture, mining, erosion, rainfall, and dam water releases. The knowledgeable stakeholders discuss among themselves and provide feedback.

Components from Playing 1st Workshop

Now it’s time to play! In this role playing game the participants play as lowland farmers, upland farmers, or dam managers under conditions of normal or heavy rainfall. The lowland farmers plant either rice or vegetables and are vulnerable to flooding caused by erosion from upland farming, and/or unfortunately timed releases from dam.

Map of Low Level Flooding Phonsi Village- workshop 2 p11

Of course that first group didn’t have all the information. Now we go out to the villages, and get them to give input on how they are affected by the floods, e.g. where flooding occurs and negative and positive effects such as destruction of fishing equipment or increases in soil productivity.

Village plus basin combined map from 3rd workshop

Now we’re ready to link the river basin scale and village level dynamics in a game that includes even a wider group of stakeholders (see the white village maps). Here, white stones represent water, and black stones represent sedimentation.

Action cards from 3rd Session

Of course, what drives sedimentation, as well as people’s vulnerability to the impacts of flooding, are human actions. The game allows people to take actions based on those they would take in real life.


Final Presentation of simulation

The common understanding of the drivers and impacts of funding has now been developed and checked multiple times. This understanding is formalized in a computer simulation which helps policy makers plan, analyze, and predict the effects of different management options

Presentation of Game

And for those who want a more dynamic and engaged understanding of the flooding issue, an electronic version of the game is also delivered.