VR Europe will bring together young people from Germany and Poland to create an interactive VR game experience on European citizenship - and how it can help young Europeans in their daily lives. We believe that the narrative for an inclusive and forward-looking Europe must be reframed and reinvented. Using state-of-the-art immersive tools, we will create an engaging experience for young Europeans to navigate never-ending crises and combat nationalistic and inward-looking populism.
VR Europe aims to address the lack of emotional engagement between young people and European citizenship. Promoters of an inclusive European identity and citizenship have failed to effectively communicate its benefits and how Europe can help address the crises young people are facing today and in the future. We believe that this shortcoming has to do with both outdated story-telling and inadequate use of the new media formats that dominate peer-to-peer communication among digital natives.
VR Europe will give young people from Germany and Poland the opportunity to jointly develop an immersive, educational VR game experience. That tool will help make the case to their peers across Europe for a modern, inclusive, open Europe, one that serves its citizens and contributes positively to global human development. This immersive experience will mix state-of-the-art technology with creative content to reach a young audience increasingly indifferent to mainstream media narratives.
The immersive VR game experience will be developed and tested in a collaborative process involving German and Polish high school students, 2084/ and its community of activists, the School for Political Design (S4PD) and its alumni network, and VR multimedia artists for technical guidance. A Berlin workshop will bring together visions and insights by activists, political design experts and the target audience of digital natives. Once developed and tested, it will serve as a gaming introduction to building a social Europe and inspiring young people to engage in strengthening European citizenship. The project will also include and build on the ideas and lessons of the 2015 campaign “The European Republic is Under Construction”, co-initiated by a S4PD founder.
The main target group consists of young citizens across Europe who are increasingly disillusioned by politics in general and European democracy in particular. By including high school students in the creation of the immersive tool, we will ensure that their views and concerns remain at the heart of the project so that it can effectively reach a broader audience across Europe. This tool will then be broadly shared with European youth activists and civic educators.
We would love to hear from other activists interested in immersive / game experiences. Do you know of any other project combining VR and civic education? Do you already work on European citizenship with high school students in the Ruhr Area or Poland? Please get in touch!