Meaningful Play 2022 at Michigan State University

Designing & Studying Games that Matter

Meaningful Play 2022 Conference Overview

Whether designed to entertain or to achieve more "serious" purposes, games, virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality have the potential to impact players' beliefs, knowledge, attitudes, emotions, cognitive abilities, physical and mental health, and behavior.

Meaningful Play 2022 is a conference about theory, research, and game design innovations, principles and practices. Meaningful Play brings scholars and industry professionals together to understand and improve upon games to entertain, inform, educate, and persuade in meaningful ways.

The conference will include thought-provoking keynotes from leaders in academia and industry, peer-reviewed paper presentations, panel sessions (including academic and industry discussions), innovative workshops, roundtable discussions, and exhibitions of games and prototypes.

Conference Audience and Themes

The conference is primarily for:

  • industry and academic game researchers
  • industry and academic game designers and developers
  • game educators
  • students
  • government and NGOs interested in games

The three primary themes of the conference are:

  • exploring meaningful applications of games
  • issues in designing meaningful play
  • learning, education & games

The first theme includes an examination of games (of all types) from primarily an academic research perspective.

The second theme focuses on much more practical knowledge from the front-line of actual design, development, and use of games, virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality experiences for meaningful purposes.

The third theme is focuses the use of games for learning and education, as well as the teaching of game making and game studies within academia.

Conference News

May 10, 2022 - Brian Murray, Rachel Kowert, and Carrie Heeter announced as keynote presenters at Meaningful Play 2022.

March 31, 2022 - Doris C. Rusch and Andrew "Andy" Phelps announced as keynote presenters at Meaningful Play 2022. More keynoters to be announced soon.

March 14, 2022 - Lindsay Grace and Heidi Boisvert announced as keynote presenters at Meaningful Play 2022. More keynoters to be announced soon.

January 31, 2022 - The Call for Submissions is now available for Meaningful Play 2022. Submit and be part of the program!

January 28, 2022 - Early Registration is now open for Meaningful Play 2022!

November 4, 2021 - Meaningful Play 2022 was discussed with Brian Winn as part of Dr. Robby Ratan's SPARTIE-cast podcast. Check it out... (NOTE: The dates were slightly adjusted for the conference after this podcast was recorded.)

Previous Meaningful Plays

View details on previous Meaningful Play conferences.

Meaningful Play 2008 Meaningful Play 2010 Meaningful Play 2012 Meaningful Play 2014 Meaningful Play 2016 Meaningful Play 2018

Featured Speakers

Lindsay Grace Heidi Boisvert

Lindsay Grace, Knight Chair, University of Miami School of Communication

Heidi Boisvert, Founder, futurePerfect lab, Co-Founder, XTH

Doris C. Rusch Andy Phelps

Doris C. Rusch, Professor of Game Design, Uppsala University

Andrew "Andy" Phelps, Professor, University of Canterbury and American University

Brian Murray Rachel Kowert

Brian Murray, Creative Director, Electronic Arts

Rachel Kowert, Research Psychologist and the Research Director of Take This

Carrie Heeter Coming Soon

Carrie Heeter, Professor of Media and Information at Michigan State University and Director of Yoga Mind Tools

Coming Soon

More details on featured speakers.

Special Events

Details on special events will be available closer to Meaningful Play 2022. View the Meaningful Play 2018 special events.