Role-play simulations for climate change adaptation education and engagement

TitleRole-play simulations for climate change adaptation education and engagement
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsRumore, D, Schenk, T, Susskind, L
JournalNature Climate Change
Start Page745
Date Published08/2016

In order to effectively adapt to climate change, public officials and other stakeholders need to rapidly enhance their understanding of local risks and their ability to collaboratively and adaptively respond to them. We argue that science-based role-play simulation exercises — a type of 'serious game' involving face-to-face mock decision-making — have considerable potential as education and engagement tools for enhancing readiness to adapt. Prior research suggests role-play simulations and other serious games can foster public learning and encourage collective action in public policy-making contexts. However, the effectiveness of such exercises in the context of climate change adaptation education and engagement has heretofore been underexplored. We share results from two research projects that demonstrate the effectiveness of role-play simulations in cultivating climate change adaptation literacy, enhancing collaborative capacity and facilitating social learning. Based on our findings, we suggest such exercises should be more widely embraced as part of adaptation professionals' education and engagement toolkits.