News and Events from the Department

Call for Papers: Transformative Play Initiative Seminar 2022

2022-03-21

The words "Seminar: Role-playing,  Culture & Heritage" with an abstract watercolour image

Announcing the Transformative Play Initiative Seminar at Uppsala University Campus Gotland in Sweden, October 20-21, 2022! Organized by the Games & Society Lab at the Department of Game Design with financial support from the Sustainable Heritage Research Forum (SuHRF), this hybrid online and in-person event will feature short academic presentations by researchers and practitioners in the fields of Role-playing Game Studies and adjacent activities. The theme for this seminar is Role-playing, Culture, and Heritage.

Role-playing, Culture, and Heritage
October 20-21, 2022
Visby, Sweden
Free Admission

Announcing the Transformative Play Initiative Seminar 2022 at Uppsala University Campus Gotland in Sweden! Organized by the Games & Society Lab at the Department of Game Design with financial support from the Sustainable Heritage Research Forum (SuHRF), this hybrid online and in-person event will feature short academic presentations by researchers and practitioners in the field of Role-playing Game Studies and adjacent activities. 

The Transformative Play Initiative studies the use of analog role-playing games such as tabletop and live action role-playing (larp) as vehicles for personal and social change. We focus on the use of these games in applied contexts, e.g. education, therapy, social work, youth work, activism, community work, spiritual guidance, etc.  

Our theme for this year is: Role-playing, Culture, and Heritage. Some possible topics include:

  • Role-playing as a means to experience cultural heritage
  • The heritage of role-playing games as a medium, subculture, and/or movement
  • Local, regional, national, or international uses of role-playing games to explore cultures
  • Documentation of role-playing games, including its challenges and current innovations
  • Documentation and research on specific role-playing games or communities
  • Role-playing games as socio-cultural phenomena
  • The impact of role-playing games on culture
  • Role-playing as a tool to explore new cultural norms, social structures, and systems
  • Role-playing in educational contexts
  • Role-playing in therapeutic contexts
  • Role-playing in intercultural communication
  • Role-playing at museums and other heritage sites
  • Role-playing and sustainable heritage
  • Role-playing as a means of conflict transformation 
  • Role-playing games as activism and/or aid work in specific cultural contexts
  • The intersection of role-playing games and technology

While we are especially interested in papers with these themes, we also welcome work on other related topics, such as simulation, immersive theatre, improvisation, online role-playing games, etc. Presenters have the option of submitting papers for consideration in a conference proceeding for the International Journal of Role-Playing. Keynoters have been selected and will be announced in the future.

While this event will be streaming and poster presentations will take place online, the majority of this seminar will take place in Visby, Sweden. Visby is located on the island of Gotland. Honored by UNESCO as one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe, we plan to offer optional heritage activities on the island.

Guidelines and Deadlines:

This event will be hybrid, meaning online and in-person at Campus Gotland in Visby. Presentations will be streamed through Zoom, recorded and uploaded both to our archive and our YouTube for posterity. The event will also feature optional in-person workshops, game jams, role-playing sessions, and sightseeing activities before the conference begins and in the evenings.

We have multiple tracks for participation:

  • Academic Article Track: Presenters will submit an abstract for a 15-20 minute presentation. If accepted, they will then compose an 8-10 page paper before the conference. Papers should include at least ten (10) peer-reviewed scholarly sources. Presenters will engage in open peer review with guidance from our editorial team. Presenters from this track are expected to review 1-2 other articles. If revisions are completed adequately, the final articles will be featured in a special issue of the International Journal of Role-Playing in 2023.
  • Academic Presentation Track: Presenters will submit an abstract only based upon their research. If accepted, these 15 minute presentations will be included in the in-person program. 
  • Practitioner Presentation Track: Practitioners may submit abstracts for consideration based upon their design or implementation work in the field. If accepted, these presentations will be included in the in-person program. 
  • Poster Presentation Track: Online participants can submit an abstract either an academic or practitioner focused poster presentation, which will take the form of a 5-10 minute video. If accepted, we will show these videos on Zoom during breaks in the in-person programming with brief Q&A sessions. 

Note that we will accept a maximum of 28 in-person presentations and a maximum of 10 poster presentations. Number of participants total, including audience members, is limited to 100. We will send the registration form at a later date.

Deadlines:

Abstracts for all tracks due: May 15, 2022
Acceptance notifications: May 30, 2022
Academic Articles due: August 1, 2022
Peer reviews due: October 1, 2022
Seminar: October 20-21, 2022
Peer reviews returned: November 15, 2022
Revisions due: January 5, 2023
IJRP Conference Proceeding Publication: Spring 2023

Abstracts should be 200-300 words in length, not including References. Academic articles and presentation abstracts should include at least five (5) peer-reviewed scholarly sources.

Important note: We value documentation and aim to videostream on Zoom and archive this event on YouTube. By sending in an abstract, you are also consenting to your talk being filmed and archived. Additionally, we will ask you to review your captions to make sure they are accurate for accessibility reasons.

Admission to the seminar is free. Registration will open closer to the seminar dates.

RSVP for the event on Facebook at this link.

Please submit abstracts and other questions to the Transformative Play Initiative at transformativeplay-speldesign@uu.se.

Click here to review the Seminar’s Code of Conduct and Guidelines for Encouraged Behavior.

Last modified: 2021-11-16