An interactive game exploring ethical dilemmas.

This project was a collaboration with Universiteits Museum Utrecht (UmU) and Universiteit Utrecht (UU).

Made together with Anita Suetens, Brechje LaFeber, Jesse van Eijmeren, Kim Reinders Folmer and Peer Lomans.

About the project: Universiteits Museum Utrecht is nearing the end of a 7-year renovation project in which the museum has been closed down, completely stripped and renewed. They turned to the HKU for one last project. Their request: an interactive experience through which children and their parents can learn about the ethical dilemmas that medical researchers may encounter during their work. UmU specifically wanted the interactive experience to bring about high quality discussions and conversations about the dilemmas the users encountered.

In this project I was responsible for the Interaction Design and Physical design. I designed the method of production for the physical tiles and produced them together with Peer Lomans.

The dilemma of dilemmas This project turned out to be extremely challenging. Ethical dilemmas on their own are a tough subject to design well for children as a lot of context for dilemmas is based around ethics and philosophy. With the help of two students from the Universiteit Utrecht we attempted to make concrete examples from complex philosophycal situations. This turned out to be the most challenging part of the project. In the end we ended up choosing a few dilemmas which we deemed suit for the project and completed the design-phase with them.

What is Keuzestress? What we ended up with is a physical boardgame in which the users are the living game pawns. Users throw a foam dice and divide the amount of steps amongst each other. The goal is to get everyone to the end of the board. However, along the way they will encounter dilemma tiles. Once they land on a dilemma tile, a dilemma will be read to the group and they will have to reach a consensus. If they do not reach a consensus, or one or more of the group disagree, there will be consequences. Including, for exmaple, losing a leg and having to finish the rest of the game hopping on one leg. This serves as an incentive to discuss the dilemmas within the group.

Does it work? We tested dozens of versions of Keuzestress before landing on this final version. We tested at UmU and Freinet Elementary School Elckerlyc, with different groups of children. This final version resulted in the highest quality conversations between the groups of children, which is exactly what UmU wanted.