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Social Movement Strategy in the Age of Social Media: a Co-Design Workshop

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Oshkosh, WI

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Activists, gamers, media makers, and artists, this event is for you!

This workshop is for 10-25 activists, gamers, and artists to explore opportunities for cross-issue promotion and crowdsourced strategy to help social movements achieve their goals. We will specifically discuss strategy for a game prototype that leverages Wisconsin history to help players connect the issue of money in politics to climate change, gun control, and other progressive causes.

  • Introduction to the project's research goals and story-based strategy

  • Playtest a game prototype exploring place-based civic engagement

  • Share feedback on the game and suggest changes

  • Strategy co-design activity: use prompts to map key opportunities for civic action in Wisconsin communities between June and August of 2019.

  • Discuss ways to continue the conversation.


What's the big idea here?

The output of this research will be integrated into an 8-week social movement game prototype that will take place in summer 2019. This game invites players to uncover a time-traveling story embedded in Wisconsin state history. From Laffollett’s fight against corporate corruption and Leopold’s protection of the state’s lands, to the Republican promotion of public education, we seek to remind Wisconsinites of their progressive roots through place-based connection to the past and future.

To do so, players will have to discover the roles past Wisconsinites played in that story and identify issues they want to address for future generations. The game then arms players with an arsenal of creative activism tactics to ignite public discussion and influence key decisions related to issues they care about. Players will be able to access this experience through a location-based mobile game or the web, and clues will be hidden in both virtual and physical spaces.

Participation in this workshop will inform the strategy and content of this game!


Our ultimate goal is to develop a civic engagement tool that leverages crowdsourcing, historical narrative, and location-based games to coordinate strategic deployments of creative activism in real-world places.

The driving question is:

How might games enable social movement organizations to strategically coordinate creative resistance at the local level?

Learn more about this project here!


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Oshkosh, WI

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