All ISAGA 2014 Conference Keynotes are now online in our youtube playlist. see here

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45. ISAGA Conference Keynote Panel Discussions: “Play and Work – Learning Experience at the Workplace” (8. and 9. July 2014)

Claudia Schmitz, CEO Cenandu Learning Agency, former President of European Women´s Management Development, Cologne, Germany

Panel Participants – Users from Companies:
Dr. Daniel Englberger, Head Global Business Services, Zurich Insurance Company Ltd, Zürich, Switzerland
Miriam Konrad, Program Manager, DB Mobility Logistics AG, DB Akademie, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Julia Li, CEO HCD Global, Shanghai, China

Panel Participants – Consultants and Game Designers:
Asi Burak (Games for Change), Dr. Mario Herger (Enterprise Gamification Consultancy), Prof. Dr. Ivo Wenzler (Accenture) and Prof. Dr. Leon De Caluwe (Twynstra Gudde), see also Keynote Lectures

click here for details

45. ISAGA Conference Keynote Lectures:

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Playing the future – The role of serious gaming in managing change" by Prof. Dr. Ivo Wenzler, Professor Delft University & Senior Principal Accenture Management Consulting, The Netherlands

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility - Digital Games for Social Impact and Learning" by Asi Burak M.A., New York, USA, award‐winning game creator, President of Games for Change, former Vice President of Marketing & Product at Axis Mobile, Prof. New York School of Visual Arts

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Why Gamification is not about games, but feedback and information" by Dr. Mario Herger, CEO Enterprise Gamification Consultancy LLC (San Francisco, USA), Head of Austrian Innovation Center Silicon Valley; former Senior Innovation Strategist at SAP Labs Palo Alto

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "The transition from mental containers to reflective practitioners"by Prof. Dr. Jan Klabbers, KMPC Consulting & Prof. em. University of Bergen (Norway), former ISAGA President & General Secretary

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Agent Based Modeling for Gaming & Simulation - Gaming & Simulation for Intervention Level Modeling, Understanding and Management" by Prof. Dr. Hiroshi Deguchi, Director of the Center for Agent‐Based Social Systems Sciences, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Chair of JASAG, Japan

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "How can games work for change?" by Prof. Dr. Leon De Caluwe, Professor University Amsterdam & Senior Partner Twynstra Gudde Management Consultants, The Netherlands

45. ISAGA Conference Keynote Activities (large group games with all participants)

Keynote Action: "It’s on the Cards: Card Games that Shift Teaching to Collective Learning" by Sivasailam “Thiagi” Thiagarajan, Ph.D., CEO of Thiagi Group, Inc., Bloomington (USA), former NASAGA president and president of International Society for Performance Improvement

Keynote Action: "Mystery ‐ ISAGA 2014 Conference Game" by Eric Treske, CEO intrestik, Munich, Germany

Keynote Action: "Play and discussion of a prototype game for Terre des Hommes that is designed during the ISAGA 2014 conference game design workshop" by Dr. Vincent Peters (ISAGA executive chair, Prof. University of Applied Sciences in Nijmegen, NL) & Dr. Marleen van de Westelaken (CEO Samenspraak Advies Nijmegen) & Florian Andriessen (coordinator Terre des Hommes, The Netherlands)

Keynote Action: “New Commons Game“ ‐ Adaption for Large Group and Smartphones, in memory and honor of Richard Powers ( 2014) by Dr. Markus Ulrich, UCS, Zürich, Switzerland

45. ISAGA Conference Keynotes – Gaming Time Capsule Exhibition

Simulation Game “HEX” (board game from 1970ies) by Prof. Dr. Richard Duke, University of Michigan, USA, founder of ISAGA

Hellwigs War Game from 1780 by Prof. Dr. Rolf Nohr, Braunschweig University of Art, Germany

Ecopolicy® by Prof. Frederic Vester (cybernetic strategy game for students and Top‐management from 1970ies paper version to 2014 multimedia version) by Gabriele Harrer‐Puchner, Head Competence Center Vester, Malik Management Zentrum St. Gallen, Switzerland

TOPSIM ‐ Petrol Management Simulation and Early Years of Gaming in Germany (first german management game for personal computers from 1980ies) by Prof. Dr. Bernt Högsdal & Prof. Dr. Nils Högsdal, Stuttgart Media University, Germany, former CEO´s of Topsim

Time Capsule Panel Discussion – “Back to the future of Gaming”

Prof. Dr. Willy Kriz, FHV University, Austria

Prof. Dr. Richard Duke, University of Michigan, USA

Round 1 – “Veterans”

  • Prof. Dr. Paola Rizzi, University of Sassari, Italy;
  • Prof. Dr. Elyssebeth Leigh, University of Wollongong, Australia;
  • Prof. Dr. Jac Geurts, University of Tilburg, Netherlands;
  • Prof. Dr. Dmitry Kavtaradze, Moscow State University, Russia;
  • Prof. Dr. Richard Teach, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA;
  • Prof. Dr. Amparo Garcia‐Carbonell, Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, Spain; Prof. Dr. Shigehisa Tsuchiya, Chiba Institute of Technology, Japan;
  • Rob Cary, USA.

Round 2 – “Next Generation”

  • Prof. Dr. Sebastiaan Meijer, KTH Stockholm, Sweden;
  • Dr. Marcin Wardaszko, Kozminski University Warsaw, Poland;
  • Dr. Yusuke Toyoda, Ritsumaican University Kyoto, Japan;
  • Dr. Heide Lukosch, Delft University, Netherlands;
  • Cand. Dr. Sebastian Schwägele, DHBW University Stuttgart, Germany.

Also the audience is invited to ask questions and to add ideas and comments.

(click on a keynote-item listed above to read them in detail, if link is available)




"Mystery: ISAGA 2014 Conference Game" by Eric Treske

About the speaker:

Eric Treske is a developer and conductor of organization and simulation games. He founded his company intrestik in 2004 in Munich. He is a sociologist with the focus on organization and has had several years of experience as a consultant in the field of personnel and organization development. In 2008, intrestik established a second office in the German capital, Berlin.

intrestik supports its customers to improve their business by finding new ways to work together. For this goal, intrestik uses the theoretical knowledge from social science and the power of gaming simulations in their consulting projects and in their ready-made and special developed simulation games. For example, intrestik had supported its clients by the implementation of group work, and the establishment of a shared vision of quality and risk awareness, in critical infrastructure systems.

Eric Treske serves for several years in ISAGA Executive Board and in SAGSAGA Executive Board.


Eric Treske has designed this frame-game for the 45th conference.

The main elements are gaming-knowledge, fun, communication, co-operation and competition.

In order to play please fill out a short questionnaire before the game starts (you will find it in your conference bag), because your answers are part of the game.

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“Play and Work – Learning Experience at the Workplace”

Moderator of part 1 and part 2: Claudia Schmitz

About the speaker:

Claudia Schmitz started Cenandu Learning Agency in Cologne in 2002. Cenandu is a network of consultants facilitating complex learning processes; they do international leadership programs, local economic trainings and support strategy transfer in companies. Claudia Schmitz believes in interactive experiential learning with board games to strengthen strategic thinking. She uses ready-made Celemi board games from Sweden, who is a partner as well on this conference. Her background beside games is corporate communications, leadership and strategic thinking. Claudia was a press speaker in companies before and was president of the management network EWMD. She is a networker and loves people.

Panelists part 1 (July 8th): Dr. Daniel Englberger, Miriam Konrad, Dr. Ivo Wenzler, Dr. Mario Herger

About the speakers:

Dr. Daniel Englberger serves as Head of Global Business Services of Zurich Insurance Group Ltd (Zurich). He joined Zurich in November 2008 as Head of Business Change and Information Technology Germany. In February 2011, he assumed a global role as Head of the Group Project Management Office (PMO), delivering on Group Operations' mandate to manage key Group processes and programs. Within its scope this covered project governance, project portfolio management, project delivery capabilities and quality assurance, post-merger-integration, Group Data Management and The Zurich Way (TZW). In his current role as Head of Global Business Services, which he assumed in July 2012, Daniel Englberger is responsible for the global management of Finance Operations, Corporate Real Estate & Facility Management, Group Security as well as Print & Document Management in North America. Daniel has 15 years of experience in the insurance industry. Before joining Zurich, he worked for Accenture as a Partner in the Insurance Practice leading a number of strategy, process and IT implementation programs. Daniel holds a mechanical engineering degree and a degree in business administration as well as a PhD in economics.

Miriam Konrad is Program Manager at DB Mobility Logistics AG - DB Akademie in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Before she served as Project Consultant at DB Schenker Rail Deutschland AG and as Research Assistant at the Chair of Organization Theory, HRM and General Management of Johannes Gutenberg-University, Mainz, Germany. She holds a Masters Degree in Business Management and is currently working on her PhD thesis.

Ivo Wenzler and Mario Herger see details at Keynote lectures.

Panelists part 2 (July 9th): Julia Li, Dr. Helmut Wittenzellner, Dr. Léon de Caluwé, Asi Burak

About the speakers:

Prof. Dr. Helmut Wittenzellner is professor of business administration and accounting at Faculty Print and Media of Media University Stuttgart, Germany. His research and teaching topics are entrepreneurship research, entrepreneurship education, accounting, innovation management, international management, modelling of market and management decisions and PC-based business simulations and board games for new business ventures. He holds a honorary professorship of Technical University Xi´an, China. He is founder of “priME-cup” - game-based entrepreneurship and management competitions and serves as chair of priME-Cup Academy AG, Switzerland.

Julia Li is the CEO and Founder of HCD Learning (Shanghai and worldwide). She also serves as a China advisor to MIT Media Lab. Since founding HCD Learning in 2002, Julia has worked with globally renowned experts and scholars to design and deliver business executive learning programs in China. Julia’s clients list includes Fortune 500 and multi‐national companies such as GE, Coca-Cola, IBM, Wal-Mart. One of her expertise is in helping foreign companies to be well-equipped to run successful business in China.

In 2009, Julia transformed HCD Learning to become an innovative experiential learning company with the vision of delivering a highly disruptive and transformational experiential learning model on a global scale. Growing the business itself has become Julia's on-going learning journey. Julia always strives to break the boundary and create new experiential learning opportunity in her life. She was the first Chinese civilian to travel into space which well demonstrates her passion for continuous learning and exploration for the unknown.

Julia graduated from Harvard Business School and holds MA degree in Education Psychology from University of Maryland. Julia is being awarded as most influential leader of the industry in 2014 by “China Economy Daily”, “China Business Herald”, and “China Branding Research Center”. HCD Learning has also been awarded as the top 10 most influential brand in corporate learning practice in China.

Asi Burak and Léon de Caluwé see details at Keynote lectures.

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“Simulation Game Hex (1975)”

About the speaker:

Richard D. Duke is Professor Emeritus of the University of Michigan’s College of Architecture and Urban Planning. He is the former Chairman of the Certificate Program in Gaming/Simulation at the Rackham Graduate School at the University of Michigan. Professor Duke is a founding and honorary member of the International Simulation and Games Association and has served as the president of ISAGA on two occasions. Over fifty years of practice, Professor Duke has participated in the development of over one hundred games and/or simulations. Many of these projects have been policy games for strategic management both within the USA as well as in Europe and Asia.


Dick Duke participated in a number of projects developed for the UNESCO Human Settlement Management Program in Paris. One of these projects resulted in the HEX game (Duke, 1975/1976). Its primary objective was to introduce players to the problems of communication between governmental decision makers at the local, regional and national levels. This exercise is still in active use today; several groups have modified it to meet a local need (e.g. combination with ICT or as large group game). Hex game is available from UCS - Ulrich Creative Simulations (Zurich, Switzerland). Markus Ulrich from UCS and eric Treske from intrestik produced recently a modern version of Hex. Eric Treske will lead a Hex-workshop during the conference and Dick Duke will share some background information on the design of Hex in his keynote.

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“TOPSIM ‐ Petrol Management Simulation from 1980ies and Early Years of Gaming in Germany”

About the speakers:

Before becoming a professor at the Hochschule der Medien (Stuttgart Media University) Nils Högsdal was a Senior Vice President of TATA Interactive Systems in charge of the TOPSIM operations. TOPSIM was created more than 30 years ago with the vision to transfer best practices from pilot training into management and leadership training. TOPSIM is the leading provider for management simulations in the German speaking region: more than 1.000 clients rely on TOPSIM management simulations and TOPSIM seminars.

Nils Högsdal has a strong background both in the financial and in the behavioural aspects of management and leadership. Pre-TOPSIM work experiences include a position in financial controlling for a semi-conductor production plant as well as an assignment as an expert for information technology in the sales department of an international airline. Nils Högsdal has lived and worked in North America for a total of more than 2 years.

During his tenure at TIS Nils Högsdal was responsible for the concepts of new management simulations and training programs. He is a highly rated executive trainer, specialised in Finance, Value Based Management and Strategic Management especially in designs of Management Development Programs. He has a profound background in both economic and psychological aspects of management. For TIS Germany he was in charge of the Finance function.

The solution recently created for an American client received the highly recognized Brandon Hall Award in Gold. Also a number of other training offerings designed during his tenure have received awards within Germany.

In the keynote also his father Prof. Dr. Bernt Högsdal will speak about early years of Gaming in Germany, as he is one of the pioneers of management simulation in Germany (founder of Unicon and of Topsim games in the 1960ies and 1970ies).


TOPSIM ‐ Petrol Management Simulation is one of the first computer based general management simulation games to be distributed in Germany for personal computers. It is based on the MS-DOS operating system. TOPSIM - Petrol is a simulation designed in the second half of the 1980s by UNICON and ARAL to train owners of gas stations on how to improve their top and bottom line. Using a Virtual Machine we have been able to restore this virtual landmark. 

Imagine you wake up one morning and you find yourself in charge of a gas station in Lindau, Lake Constance. This is your gas station and you have to run the show. You would think it is easy, selling coffee and drinks, running the bistro and making sure that the sandwiches are fresh and you would also sell gas and carwashes. Then you take a second look and see that you are back in 1988! Your Aral station (now owned by BP) is 2 km away from the Austrian border and border meant border in those days. It is amazing how different business models looked in those days: you make a nice portion of your profit by fixing cars, changing oil and selling tires. You mostly sell leaded fuel and an important portion of your other revenue is coming from selling maps (there was no GPS in those days...) and you have to consider offering car wash facilities which is a gamble since most people will wash their car at home on a Saturday. The only thing which has not changed is the fact that you make more profit on the 6 pack of beer you are able to upsell compared to the full tank of gas you have just sold.

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“Hellwig´s War Game 1780”

About the speaker:

Dr. Rolf F. Nohr is Professor for Media Aesthetics and Media Culture at University of Arts, Braunschweig (Germany). His PhD thesis (2001) was about “Maps in Television. The Production of Positioning”. Recently he was head of a three-years project funded by DFG (German Research Association) “Strategie Spielen” (translation: „Playing Strategy“). In this research program he led the reconstruction of historic strategy games including Hellwig´s war game.


The “War game” was developed in 1780 by the Braunschweig mathematician Johann Christian Ludwig Hellwig. The game was originally entitled “Attempt of a tactical game based on chess and played by two or more persons”. The game can be seen exemplarily for a clutch of similar contemporary games. Hellwig’s game is a chess-like board game war simulation and, therefore, amongst others, resembles Christoph Weickmann’s Chess Game of 1644, card games like “Jeu de la Guerre” and “Jeu de la Fortification2 from the early 18th century, Georg Venturis’ war game “Rules for a New War Game for the Use in Military Facilities” developed in 1797 or the war game of Baron von Reißwitz of 1811. It was Hellwig’s ambition to create a cost-saving and playable war simulation game and to didactically employ this simulation for his teaching. Hellwig’s game is basically a book of rules that has to be amended by a board and game parts that have to be produced by the players themselves. The war game was reconstructed by Rolf Nohr und Stefan Böhme (from Braunschweig University of Arts, Institute of Media Studies) according to the original writings of Hellwig.

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“Frederic Vester´s Ecopolicy® - cybernetic strategy game for students and Top‐Management from 1970ies paper version to 2014 multimedia version”

About the speaker:

Gabriele Harrer-Puchner, Head of Malik Competence Center Vester, has profound experience with the application and the scientific development of ecopolicy®. Working closely with Frederic Vester over 18 years, she accompanied most versions of the game, from the first board game „Ökolopoly“ in Vester’s exhibit „Our world, an interconnected system“, to the manifold computer versions until the current application of the game worldwide. Since 2006 at Malik Management, she conducted many consulting projects with the Malik Sensitivity Model®Prof.Vester, especially with cities and regions and organizations in the public and military sector and gives lectures at several universities (amongst others at the University of German Federal Armed Forces Munich.


The cybernetic simulation game Ecopolicy® is well known by generations of enthusiastic players from children, students, teachers to managers and politicians. Developed by the German scientist and systems researcher, Member of the Club of Rome, Prof. Frederic Vester and his team, the game looks back on a long history from the paper version in the 70ies to the multimedia computer version in 2014.

Malik Management St. Gallen AG, which after a long cooperation with Vester took over the rights on his work, is continuing the development and funding the application of ecopolicy in projects with schools and universities. After the successful German „ecopolicyade® competition“, which reached over 200.000 students, since 2013 international projects are in the making. Ecopolicy® with its unique principles of cybernetic thinking allows a playful approach to interconnectedness and new ways of thinking. Complementary to the experiences with the game, the students learn to deal with complexity with the practical application of the computer based Malik Sensitivity Model®Prof.Vester in real life projects.

“With ecopolicy, a new generation of systems thinkers grows up. Our aim is to enable all children, but also politicians and manager, to learn to understand and to master complexity. Introducing a broad public to the findings of cybernetics is the basis for control and management of our society towards viability.” Fredmund Malik

In her ISAGA keynote, Gabriele Harrer gives insights in the history and uniqueness of ecopolicy® and shows up the further development and international applications in education and management.

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“New Commons Game - for Large Group and Smartphones“ (in memoriam Richard Powers) by Dr. Markus Ulrich

About the speaker:

Dr. Markus Ulrich, Ph.D. in Environmental Sciences, is the founder of UCS Ulrich Creative Simulations (Zürich). The company is specialised on the development and the application of simulation games for sustainable development and corporate sustainability. He has been involved in many simulation game design projects. In these projects, simulation games with most different formats and for many topics have been created, with different customers, budgets, and challenges. He is committed to sustainable development, and attempts to contribute to a more sustainable world with simulation games that are both playful and based on sound knowledge. He attended the professional program in Simulation & Gaming Studies of Prof. R. Duke. He is lecturer at University of Business and Administration (HWZ) Zurich and University of Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW). He is executive board member of ISAGA (world) and founding member of SAGSAGA.


“The New Commons Game” simulates Garrett Hardin’s (1968) tragedy of the commons, in which a group tends to overexploit their resource. It was originally designd by Richard B. Powers for small groups and in a paper version. In the picture below Richard (who died 2014) is shown facilitating the game at ISAGA Summerschool 2012. Markus Ulrich has developed a new version for large groups and using smartphone technology (supported by SIMVEDA, Wolfgang Gorbach).

Richard B. Powers conducting NCG

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Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "How can games work for change?" by Prof. Dr. Léon de Caluwé

About the speaker:

Prof. Dr. Léon de Caluwé is senior partner at Twynstra Gudde management consultants in the Netherlands and professor at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. He is one of the best known consultants in the Netherlands and did hundreds of assignments in the area of change in organizations. He uses gaming/simulation as a method for change. He leads the Center for Research on Consultancy (CRC) that does research on the effects of interventions of management consultants. He has 200 publications to his name, both in English and Dutch. More than 20 books are part of this. He received several professional awards for his work. He teaches in well known national and international courses, is editor of Journals and an active member of the Academy of Management.

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "How can games work for change" by Prof. Dr. Léon de Caluwé


The key note speech will focus on: Why do games work for change? And what is the nature of those games? What are the theories of change that explain the effects of certain methods of gaming? And how to strengthen these effects? Leon de Caluwé will make use of his work as a consultant and change agent and as a scholar.

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Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Playing the future – The role of serious gaming in managing change" by Prof. Dr. Ivo Wenzler

About the speaker:

Dr. Ivo Wenzler is a Senior Principal within Accenture’s Management Consulting organization and an Associate Professor at the Delft University of Technology. He holds a masters degree in Architecture and Urban Planning and a PhD in Simulations and Gaming from the University of Michigan. Prior to Accenture and Technical University in Delft, he was the Head of Policy Analysis Group at the Radboud University in Nijmegen and Research Associate at the University of Michigan. At Accenture he focuses on development and implementation of performance management, change management, business modeling, and simulation and serious gaming approaches aimed at helping his clients deal with their business transformation challenges. At the Technical University in Delft he does research on the next generation of infrastructures in the context of sustainable cities and teaches a master’s course in serious game design.

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Playing the future – The role of serious gaming in managing change" by Prof. Dr. Ivo Wenzler


Getting to and benefiting from a transformational change implies a change journey addressing the questions like: where do we want to be, how do we get there, and how do we make it work. Embarking on a change journey is not easy and is accompanied by a variety of challenges. This presentation will look into some of the fundamental reasons why is transformational change difficult and provide practical examples on how serious gaming and simulations can help us effectively and efficiently address these challenges as well as deal with content related questions within transformational change.

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Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility - Digital Games for Social Impact and Learning" by Asi Burak

About the speaker:

Asi Burak is an award-winning game creator, tech executive, and social entrepreneur. He is the President of Games for Change (G4C), a nonprofit with the mission to catalyze social impact through digital game. As the Executive Producer of the Half the Sky Movement games, he orchestrated partnerships with Zynga, some of the world's leading NGOs and Pulitzer Prize-winning authors Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. The Facebook game has reached 1.2 million registered players and generated around $500,000 in sponsored and individual donations.

Prior to that, Burak co-founded Impact Games and created the internationally acclaimed “PeaceMaker” and “Play the News” gaming platforms. He also served as a consultant to companies such as EON Productions (known as the producer of the 007 movies and video games), Newsweek and McCann Erickson, around the strategic use of games to further brand engagement.

A native of Israel, Burak was Vice President of Marketing and Product at Axis Mobile (acquired 2008), where he introduced pioneering mobile apps and games to a worldwide market (Asia, Europe, U.S.). He is a faculty member at the School of Visual Arts’ MFA in Design for Social Innovation and holds a Master of Entertainment Technology from Carnegie Mellon University.

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): “With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility - Digital Games for Social Impact and Learning" by Asi Burak


The talk will address the power of digital games as a maturing medium and a largely untapped tool "for good".

It will make an impassioned case for using games for social impact and learning, with an overview of the latest trends and core challenges.

Burak will share some case studies and success stories including his unique entry to the field, leading the team behind the award-winning game "PeaceMaker" around the Middle-East Conflict. Attendees will learn about the field at large and how Games for Change is leading the future of this movement with a coalition of public and private partners.

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Keynote Action: "Play and discussion of a prototype game for Terre des Hommes that is designed during the ISAGA 2014 conference game design workshop" by Dr. Vincent Peters & Dr. Marleen van de Westelaken

About the speakers:

Dr. Vincent Peters (1953)

Since 2005 I am the co-owner of Samenspraak Advies. Before that I have worked 25 years at the Radboud University of Nijmegen as a research methodologist. At this moment I work, next to Samenspraak Advies, in the HAN University of Applied Sciences in Nijmegen, also as research methodologist. In Samenspraak Advies I have found the opportunity to combine several of my interest: design simulation games and workshops, apply them together with clients to help them to clarify problematic situations and to find ways to solve problems, and to train people in designing and facilitating simulation games.

I have been chairperson of ISAGA from 2008 – 2010 and 2012-now. I am the co-founder of Saganet (Simulation And Gaming Association The Netherlands) and have been president form 2003-2010. In 2007 I organized the Isaga 2007 Conference in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

Drs. Marleen van de Westelaken (1976)

I have a lot of fun designing activities in which participants can learn by doing. Most of the methods I use focus on the bigger picture: what are the effect of my actions and behavior to others, and to the whole system? Learning together in a safe environment by experience and reflection can be so powerful. We provide children safe environments for learning all the time when they are young. They play and simulate activities and interactions to be prepared for ‘the real life’. We simulate situations in individual trainings. But seldom for groups in cooperation processes. It’s time for simulation games!

I am co-owner of Samenspraak Advies since 2005. Before that I worked at the Radboud University for four years as a teacher and project team member. I have been member of the Steering Committee of Isaga since 2002 and member of the Advisory Council since 2010. Also, I have been board member of Saganet (Simulation And Gaming Association The Netherlands) from 2010 till 2014. In 2007 I organized the Isaga 2007 Conference in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

Keynote Action: "Play and discussion of a prototype game for Terre des Hommes that is designed during the ISAGA 2014 conference game design workshop" by Dr. Vincent Peters & Dr. Marleen van de Westelaken


Samenspraak Advies will conduct a simulation game design workshop during the whole conference. A game will be developed for a real client and donated to them. A first prototype game will be played as keynote activity on the last day of the conference. We are happy that the well-known institution Terre des Hommes will be partner for this session! Terre des Hommes is an international charitable humanitarian federation which concentrates on children's rights.
In this unique conference design workshop (facilitated during the whole duration of the conference) a group of participants will work on the design of a simulation game. Together we will go through the steps of the game design process, with the aim of having a playable prototype at the end of the conference. The prototype we aim for will be a prototype of an interactive simulation game (not a computer-based game) and in the design process we will operate according to a design methodology which is a variation of the methodology of Dick Duke.
Conference participants can participate or observe in this session. The design process will be also documented with video and will be for free download.

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Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "The transition from mental containers to reflective practitioners" by Prof. Dr. Jan H.G. Klabbers

About the speaker:

Dr. Jan H.G. Klabbers has held professor and research positions in the U.S. (MIT, Case Western Reserve University), in the Netherlands (Radboud University, Leiden University, Utrecht University, University of Amsterdam, and Erasmus University), and in Norway (University of Bergen). He is honorary member, former President and Secretary General of the International Simulation and Gaming Association (ISAGA), member of the New York Academy of Sciences, the American Educational Research Association (AERA), and the advisory committee of SAGSAGA, the science committee of the Dutch Society for Simulation in Health Care (DSSH), and SAGANET. His publications cover social systems theory, design science and analytical science methodology, and the design and application of gaming and simulation in a wide variety of areas of application. His book, “The Magic Circle: principles of gaming & simulation”, provides the general framework for these topics. Dr. Klabbers is involved in social systems development: organization design & management development, and action learning.

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): “The transition from mental containers to reflective practitioners” By Prof. Dr. Jan H.G. Klabbers


From the perspective of developing expertise and professional competence, the shift from teaching to learning is not a simple and straightforward one. It influences not only our notions about, and theories of knowledge, moreover it impacts on the way we arrange learning environments that are compatible with those views on knowledge and knowing. In addition, it defines our frames-of-reference for dealing with societal issues.

Sfard (1998) has proposed two ways of thinking about the act of gaining knowledge through learning: the acquisition and participation metaphor. The mind - in the view of the acquisition metaphor - is a mental container, and learning is a process of filling up that container. That metaphor applies well to the traditional setting of a classroom.

In line with these understandings I will distinguish the following three learning environments: the classroom, the flight simulator, and free play. In education they express different physical arrangements for learners to gain knowledge, expertise, and skills. The classroom represents the so-called reproductive, the flight simulator the heuristic, and free play the self-organizing learning environment (Klabbers, 1996, 2009). The flight simulator and free play favor the participation metaphor.

In my presentation I will elaborate on these three learning environments, and their underlying notions about knowledge. Furthermore I will argue why game science has an important role to play in idea generation, as a process best carried out in a learning community (Dewey, 1961). Those communities are devoted to disciplined inquiry into social and societal problem solving. Multiplayer games shape learning communities with the capacity to become communities of practice. They facilitate:

Mutuality of engagement – participants are able to build and maintain enduring relationships; Accountability to the common enterprise – participants act as responsibility takers – and, Negotiability of the repertoire of practice – the participants negotiate best practices to test and implement new ideas (Wenger, 2002).

Prawat (1998), while referring to Dewey, pointed out that in education attention has been focused primarily on the mental representation aspects of knowledge (emphasized by the classroom setting), which is at the expense of the all important person-environment interaction. One can notice that there is a growing crisis of confidence in this type of knowledge and consequently in this type of knowledge transfer by our educational institutions. In addition to the person-environment interaction – partly reinforced by advances in cognitive neuroscience – attention is increasingly being focused on embodied learning (Klabbers, 2009).

Recently Lindgren & Johnson-Glenberg (2013) argued that embodiment – the enactment of knowledge and concepts through the activity of our bodies – is a powerful force for learning. While the person-environment interaction is at the core of the flight simulator, embodied learning through free play stimulates learners to self-organize knowing-in-action. Multiplayer games – either rigid-rule or free-form games - encompass both flight simulators and free play. The related heuristic and self-organizing learning environments, to different degrees, prepare learners to achieve professional competence by becoming reflective practitioners, dealing with social problem solving (D. Schön, 1983, 1987).

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Keynote Action: "It’s on the Cards: Card Games that Shift Teaching to Collective Learning" by Dr. Sivasailam "Thiagi" Thiagarajan

About the speaker:

Sivasailam “Thiagi” Thiagarajan, Ph.D., is the Resident Mad Scientist of The Thiagi Group, Inc. and a partner in van den Bergh Thiagi Associates GmbH. Both these organizations focus on helping professionals improve their performance effectively and enjoyably. Internationally recognized as an expert in active learning, Thiagi has lived in three different countries and has conducted training workshops in 24 countries. He has worked with more than 50 different organizations in high-tech, financial services, and management consulting areas. Thiagi has been the president of the North American Simulation and Gaming Association (NASAGA) for four times and of the International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) twice. Thiagi has been designing and facilitating games, simulations, and training activities for 92 years (including his previous lifetimes). In this lifetime, he has started designing games when he was 8 years old. Since 1998, Thiagi has designing a new training game each day, including weekends and holidays. He has published six hefty game books and 27 slim game booklets. Every month, he publishes an online GameLetter. Beginning with June 2001, all the back issues of the GameLetter are archived in his website

Keynote Action “It’s on the Cards: Card Games that Shift Teaching to Collective Learning” By Sivasailam “Thiagi” Thiagarajan


Cards are universal play artifacts that appeal to people of all nationalities, cultures, and age groups. Going beyond the traditional playing cards, we have designed, play-tested, and refined a wide variety of card games that enable adults to collectively learn principles and procedures associated with professional performance.

Card games for corporate training are flexible and versatile. We have designed a variety of games that can be played by one person (in a solitaire fashion) to hundreds of people. We have also designed games that can be played in as little as 5 minutes all the way to as much as 52 weeks. Here are brief descriptions of types of card games that we found useful for improving individual organizational performance. The abstract related to each type of card games briefly describes what’s on the cards and how the training game is played.

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Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Agent Based Modeling for Gaming & Simulation - Gaming & Simulation for Intervention Level Modeling, Understanding and Management" by Prof. Dr. Hiroshi Deguchi

About the speaker:

Hiroshi Deguchi, born 1955 in Tokyo, is Professor in the department of Computational Intelligence and Systems Science and Director of the Center for Agent-Based Social Systems Sciences, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan. He is also Adjunct Fellow, Center for Research and Development Strategy, Japan Science and Technology Agency. He holds a Dr. of Science from Tokyo Institute of Technology and a Dr. of Economics from Kyoto University. He serves in the board of directors of several associations, e.g.: Japan Association for Evolutionary Economics, Japan Association for Social and Economic Systems Studies, Pacific-Asian Association for Agent-based Approach in Social Sciences, Japan Association for Philosophy of Science, and he is President of Japan Association of Simulation and Gaming (JASAG). He works as editor in chief of “Agent-Based Social Systems” and (, “Translational Systems Sciences” ( and is author of the book “Economics as an Agent-Based Complex System” (Springer, 2004).

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): “Agent Based Modeling for Gaming & Simulation - Gaming & Simulation for Intervention Level Modeling, Understanding and Management”


In this presentation we focus on gaming & simulation as a new Future's Language for Modeling, Understanding and Management at policy intervention level. We emphasize on scenario analysis and consensus making for Gaming & Simulation under the complex social and organizational situation. The important mission of Gaming & Simulation is to promote the ability of future scenario creation, analysis, and consensus making through not only making an evidenced base policy but also improving the communication among stakeholders.

Our worlds become more complex, and the communication among stakeholders becomes more difficult. Incommensurability of stakeholders is often emphasized on.

How to translate, bridge, and link different ways of thinkings such as political, economical, social, cultural, and many discipline-based thinkings. Our mission is to support the translational ways of thinkings to analyze and design our life world itself in this era.

For the purpose, we introduce the concept of agent based modeling (ABM) at a policy intervention level. Where agent based modeling is used not for formal scientific modeling but for combining fragments of knowledge of different specialities at a policy intervention level. ABM supports better communication and the construction of common understanding among stakeholders of the problems. We focus on a frontier of gaming & simulation as a translational way of communication that includes agent based modeling, agent based simulation, and human playing gaming. Several real world examples of new future language approach are shown in the area of health care, service, and policy sciences.

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Keynote Lecture (with discussion): "Why Gamification is not about games, but feedback and information" by Dr. Mario Herger

About the speaker:

"I help organizations make work more fun."

Mario Herger is CEO, founder and partner of Enterprise Gamification Consultancy LLC, a strategic consulting group focused on gamification, innovation, social business, and intrapreneurship in the enterprise. He had been Senior Innovation Strategist at SAP Labs in Palo Alto, California and Global Head of the Gamification Initiative at SAP where he had worked for 15 years. He also co-founded in 2013 and leads the Austrian Innovation Center Silicon Valley (AICSV) that connects Austrian and CEE startups and companies with the Silicon Valley.

In his work as gamification consultant and at SAP he has encountered and supported gamification efforts in the enterprise from multiple levels and departments, like Sustainability, On Demand, Mobile, HR, Training & Education, Banking etc. He has driven the awareness around gamification by organizing and leading innovation events around this topic, holding dozens of one- or two-day gamification and innovation workshops, working with gamification platform- & service-providers and game studios, consulting and advising organizations, and by incorporating gamification into the strategy.

He regularly speaks at and co-organizes conferences on gamification and innovation (amongst other topics). His large network in the gamification and innovation space allows him to pull in experts from every corner of the world into projects. He has been driving communities for more than 15 years, including communities on innovative topics, like Visual Composer, Business Process Experts, mobile, robotics, and gamification, but also folk-dancing (Dancilla).

He has a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Vienna University of Technology and an undergraduate degree in International Business Management from the Vienna University of Economy. He has played through all levels of the iPad game Air Attack and currently works with his seven-year-old son on reaching the final level of Angry Birds in Space.

Keynote Lecture (with discussion): “Why Gamification is not about games, but feedback and information”


Gamification, the use of game design elements in non-game contexts, is often confused with creating games. But gamified systems such as LinkedIn, Amazon, StackOverflow, or loyalty programs are not games. Applying engagement models and design elements from games to business processes and applications creates immediate feedback loops and information. This gives players a better sense of progression, achievements, flow, and autonomy than with the current state of business software. In this talk we will learn about the application of gamification in the corporate world with many examples, and gamification will make the skills of employees more transparent and the business world fairer.

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