Anne Deane Berman, PhD


"Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake"
-Thoreau
Application submitted to MacArthur Foundation: Digital Media and Learning Competition


Dynamic Transformative Game Eco-System (DTGE) Raising Social Awareness Leading to Sustainable Societal Solutions


Steven Lee Berman, Lead PI

Anne Deane Berman, Collaborator



DTGE, a K-12 learning lab eco-system,focuses on social innovation and sustainability integrating simulated and physical worlds consisting of three distinct experiences. Users make choices regarding resource consumption (energy) and carbon producing processes. Participants learn about sustainability and outcomes impacting environment, health, economics, and education, advancing “real world” sustainable solutions.



DTGE, a learning lab prototype eco-system, focuses on social innovation (new economies) and sustainability integrating simulated and physical worlds. As co-creators of their experiences,users interact as consumers and producers making choices regarding resource consumption (energy) and carbon producing processes (source: Pacific Carbon Trust). By designing, building, manufacturing, growing, and selling products in these worlds, participants learn about sustainable practices and experience consequential impacts of their decisions on environment (climate change), health (infectious disease),economics,and education advancing "real world" sustainable solutions.

K-12 students and mentors interact with materials in three different experiential environments. Through sensory communication, each product’s use, how it was made, its supply chain movements and environmental impacts are communicated to the player. Choices and consequences are not predetermined, but are based on players’ knowledge (STEM/humanities proficiencies), intuition, trial and error, virtual and physical experiences, and linked data (semantic web). 

Standalone or multiplayer environments include: (1) cross-platform game, (2) modular physical installation(s) (PI) where users design and build products from various materials (biodegradable) which model consequences, and (3) external observation of "real world" processes (manufacturing) and phenomena (carbon), from which data is gathered through a participatory sensing infrastructure (PSI), e.g. mobile devices and sensors. 

There is fluid interaction among the game, PSI and PI. Users of PSI data decide game actions and physical environment scenarios or seek recommendations from external social networks then take actions influencing game outcomes. By playing the game, participants will learn how their behaviors should be modified to advance desirable sustainability practices. 

DTGE leverages global community resources including educational institutions (physical and virtual), libraries, cultural heritage sites, museums and performance venues (Los Angeles, Vancouver, Netherlands). Supporting lesson plans based on sciences and humanities curriculum are provided to users. 

The DML process resulted in an emerging strategic partnership with PlayReal: PI, Claudia Rodriguez Ortiz, leveraging project capabilities.

The structure of this year's Competition includes a period during which applications are posted publicly for comment. We will be using tags similar to the way that you would tag a blog entry. Tags are essentially key words that will be used to help people find applications in which they may be interested. While not required, we strongly suggest that you select tags for your application to help raise its visibility.


List up to 5 tags that best describe your project.


 Sustainability

 Virtual Worlds

 K-12

 Physical Installation

 Linked Data