Tuesday 8th September 2020. This event, organised in collaboration with Climate Art and game designer Matteo Menapace, brought together participants to play an online game, designed to provoke considerations around how to effectively engage with COP26 coming to Glasgow in November 2021.
How the Game Works
The game was played using a set of Google Slides that remain accessible online. To play the game, participants work in groups of 4, coming up with ideas to respond to Challenges submitted in advance of the event. These challenges were concerned with the different goals people might have for COP26 and included:
- How might we inspire and bring about real changes which reduce Scotland’s emissions and have a lasting impact?
- How might we engage local communities in COP?
- How might we develop approaches to collaboration between the arts and civil society that can be replicated in the future?
Each member of the group produces an idea and pitches it to the rest of the group. These ideas aim to fulfil the overall success criteria that determine whether they are ‘winning’ the game:
- Policy Influence: Our ability to affect decisions made as part of the COP negotiations or leverage the presence of COP to affect UK, Scottish, local government or sector policy.
- Public engagement: Our ability to reach and involve members of the public to consider climate change, adopt behavioural shifts, and take steps to change broader society.
- Capacity: Our ability to keep our work around COP26 going, including time, resources, money, and avoiding burnout or negative environmental consequences through our actions.
- Community Building: Our ability to create effective connections and collaborations across a broad array of demographics, sectors and geographies that will yield long-term benefits.
The team votes for their favourite idea and submits it to a ‘Fortune Teller’, which predicts whether the idea is likely to succeed. They then update their ‘success trackers’ to see where they are making progress and where they are struggling. You can watch Matteo’s video about how to play the game below.
What were the outcomes?
Some of the favourite ideas presented were:
- How might we challenge the transport industries to go greener via the arts? Installations in heavily congested areas of detectors that would emit sounds of various kinds in response to high pollution levels.
- How might we make sure that different practitioners and organisations are aware of each other’s plans? Collaborate with a web designer and SEO experts to create a catalogue of activity which is easy to navigate and has clear and distinct criteria. People can also post things they need, resources/expertise etc and people can nominate themselves to contribute.
- How might we learn about nature based solutions from skilled practitioners of contemporary arts and crafts around the globe? Set up pairings bringing together Scottish based craftspeople with craftspeople based in areas on the frontlines of climate change. These pairings communicate via online platforms and produce work in dialogue, responding to sustainable making advice that they offer each other. These will be exhibited in the lead-up to COP26 in Glasgow.
- How might we challenge the transport industries to go greener via the arts?Workshops and events with artists addressing green issues held on board public transport (such as train carriages) travelling to Glasgow that is ‘commissioned’. Report the impact to transport companies.
Each team played a few rounds of the game, coming up with new ideas to tackle new challenges and continually updating their progress on the ‘success trackers’. We then came back together to discuss our experiences and share our favourite ideas. Some thoughts that emerged from the discussion were:
- Capacity was the criterion that all teams struggled with the most as actions that advanced the other aims tended to reduce our capacity. Teams found that in later rounds they had to focus more on developing ideas that would regenerate or sustain their capacity.
- People from differing backgrounds had highly contrasting ideas of what constituted effective ‘policy influence’ or ‘public engagement’. It was commented that this discussion alone could form a whole day event.
- A number of participants said that they would like for there to be more spaces to discuss and develop the ideas that they came up with as part of the game and that there should be more opportunities for this kind of discussion.
The workshop was run on a participatory document/slideshow that remains accessible online. You can explore the slides to see more ideas and feedback that came up during the event.
You can find out more about our co-organisers at:
Further resources for planning for COP26:
- Creative Carbon Scotland’s Guide to COP26and History of Arts and Culture at COPs
- The UK COP26 website provides official information and is where their call for proposals for the ‘Green Space’ at COP26 will likely be published.
- The Climate Fringe website is a space to share civil society action of all kinds leading up to COP26.
- The COP26 Coalition website is the public face of the coalition of civil society organisation planning ‘unofficial’ responses to COP. They also have a ‘Culture’ working group who hold regular meetings and communicate via a Slack workspace.
- Get Ready Glasgow website provides information and opportunities specific to the city from Glasgow Council
If you are reading this before the 12th of October 2020, you can come along for some more discussion about COP26 at the October Green Tease Online Meetup.
For more information or guidance on COP26, please get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org.
Creative Carbon Scotland is a partnership of arts organisations working to put culture at the heart of a sustainable Scotland. We believe cultural and creative organisations have a significant influencing power to help shape a sustainable Scotland for the 21st century.
In 2011 we worked with partners Festivals Edinburgh, the Federation of Scottish Threatre and Scottish Contemporary Art Network to support over thirty arts organisations to operate more sustainably.
We are now building on these achievements and working with over 70 cultural organisations across Scotland in various key areas including carbon management, behavioural change and advocacy for sustainable practice in the arts.
Our work with cultural organisations is the first step towards a wider change. Cultural organisations can influence public behaviour and attitudes about climate change through:
Changing their own behaviour;
Communicating with their audiences;
Engaging the public’s emotions, values and ideas.
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