Playful Politics: Developing a Framework for Designing Video Games for Political Participation in the United Kingdom

  • Andrew James Reid Abertay University


Political participation in the United Kingdom among young voters (aged 18-24) has steadily declined over the past two decades. Alongside this decline, video game popularity has meteorically risen among the same demographic, resulting in video games becoming increasingly more integrated within modern society. While these instances are not necessarily related, there is opportunity to explore the use of video games’ popularity to increase political participation.

The basis of this research is to investigate video games as a medium for social change, and its application within a political context in order to encourage political participation in the United Kingdom. The research intends to critically analyse existing video game design theories with implications of social impact, such as transformative design, procedural rhetoric, ethical design, persuasive principles and the theory of play.

This research has assisted in the development of the Political Design Framework, a design methodology that provides ethical definition and validation for video games that intend to promote political engagement.


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November 4, 2015