Global Game On: How video games promote world peace and diplomacy


A growing group of researchers, diplomats and video game developers, as well as the United Nations, say video games if done right may just be the future of diplomacy and a peace-making tool that effectively builds empathy, understanding and bridges between global communities.

The San Diego Diplomacy Council is hosting the first “Global Game On: How Video Games Promote World Peace & Diplomacy.”

At the virtual event, co-hosted with San Diego chapter of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA), attendees will be transported from war to peace:

The virtual event will feature a panel of video game developers and experts: Lual Mayen, 2020 CNN Champion for Change, a 25-year-old South-Sudanese refugee who now creates empathy video games. He will be joined Kate Edwards, a specialist in content culturalization and 27-year veteran of the gaming industry who currently serves as executive director of the Global Game Jam, the world’s largest annual game creation event; and Dr. Constance Steinkuehler, an American professor of informatics at the University of California, Irvine, who currently researches the cognitive and social aspects of video games, and previously advised on policy matters about video games in the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House Executive Office.

“Our goal at San Diego Diplomacy Council is to connect, inform and empower people and organizations – locally and globally – driving positive changes in themselves, their community and the world. While we can’t have as many in-person meet ups and international visitors and visits right now, we’re seeing the critical need for digital diplomacy for international connectivity and understanding – including through video games,” said Executive Director Fabienne Perlov. “We encourage citizen diplomats, grandparents, parents, high school students and more to attend in order to help promote peace and play video games together!”

The event will take place on Friday, Nov. 13 at 5 p.m. PST and will also put the concept in action, with high school students in the U.S and Mexico playing the empathy video game “Among Us,” (AOC is a fan) to promote global dialogue and collaboration.