The BGI is launching a new conference on games education to be held at Ko-Host, Sheffield’s new city centre event space at Kollider and the National Videogame Museum in Sheffield on Monday 15th – Tuesday 16th April. The Games Education Summit 2019 brings together 40 games course leaders from further and higher education, developers and HR staff from studios, recruitment companies, 3rd sector organisations and policymakers to trigger more collaboration, dialogue and best practice sharing in the first of a series of annual conferences.
Over 1.5 days, the conference will tackle the big issues in games education including employability, diversity, skills required by studios, apprenticeships, how industry can collaborate with educators, best practice pedagogical and course design and starting up from university.
Keynotes will be delivered by Ian Livingstone CBE, Mike Gamble from Epic Games, Dr Jake Habgood from Sheffield Hallam University and Dr Chris Lowthorpe from London College of Communication.
The Summit is sponsored by Sheffield Hallam University, Epic Games, Kollider, Aardvark Swift, Staffordshire University and AIM Awards.
Other speakers from the educational sector include Dr Alan O’Dea from Staffordshire University, Dr Sharon Tolaini-Sage from Norwich University of the Arts, Abertay University, Fede Fasce from Goldsmiths, Dr Carlo Harvey from Birmingham City University, Dr Umran Ali from Salford University, Dr Charlie Hargood from Bournemouth University, Falmouth University, Dr Peter Howell from Portsmouth University, Teesside University, Dr Chris Windmill from Derby University, Chris Headleand from Lincoln University, Jane Reed and Ant Cain from Sunderland College, James Bennett-Hill and Matthew Goodlad from The Sheffield College and Geoff Moore from the Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies.
Other speakers from the sector include Philip Oliver from GameDragons, Rick Gibson from the BGI, Ian Goodall from Aardvark Swift, 3 speakers from Rebellion, Karen Hedger from AIM, Karen Mcloughlin from Sumo, Melissa Jo Knox from Rare, Emma Smith from Creative Assembly, Marcia Deakin from NextGen Skills Academy, Marie-Claire Isaaman from Women in Games, Tom Murray from Dovetail Games, David Smith from Interactive Selection, Nick Duncombe from Playground Games, Unit 2 Games, Mark Eyles from TIGA and Dan Wood from Ukie.
The BGI is also launching a survey (http://bit.ly/GamesED19Survey) of educators and studios on games recruitment and education. Educators are asked to share information on their courses, the biggest challenges they face and what they need from industry. Studios are asked to share information on hiring graduates, working with educational institutes and use of apprenticeships. The anonymised data from the survey will be used to highlight best practice and allow respondents to suggest areas for further improvements and collaboration.
Ian Livingstone CBE said “This unique conference takes a strategic view of games education today, informing games course leaders and games studios about where the opportunities and challenges lie. The Summit will focus the debate on how UK studios and educational establishments can work together more effectively.”
Rick Gibson, CEO of the BGI, said: “To address the challenges and opportunities in games education and the talent pipeline, we need all the players in the same room, sharing how they work, what worked, what failed, how to improve and collaborate.”
Dr. Jake Habgood, Course Leader for Games at Sheffield Hallam University, said: “It’s incredibly valuable for educators to have a forum to discuss the collective challenges we face in games education and learn from the best practice of friends and colleagues with a common goal.”
Philip Oliver, co-chair and co-organiser of the Summit, said: “The Industry needs additional talent, especially as attracting overseas talent becomes harder due to Brexit. So we need to embrace and support educators, to ensure that the next generation of developers are not only inspired, but that they are taught what is required by industry and are able to arrive ‘job ready.”