Creating online spaces that are healthy, inclusive, and foster belonging is one of Riot’s core goals. We are fortunate to share that goal with tons of amazing partners across digital spaces, games, and online communities.
Today marks the opening of “The Designing for Digital Thriving Challenge” that Riot and IDEO have teamed up to co-host. This challenge is inspired by the work that the Fair Play Alliance (FPA) and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop are doing to establish “Digital Thriving,” a field-initiated approach to building healthy interactions and resilient communities in online game spaces.
What It Means to Design for Digital Thriving and the People Behind It
The FPA and Joan Ganz Cooney Center define digital thriving as the outcome of online spaces intentionally designed to foster feelings of well-being, accomplishment, and belonging, and meaningful relationships in individuals, groups, and communities.
FPA, founded in 2017, is a cross-industry initiative of over 250 gaming companies around the world, including Riot, working together to encourage healthy communities and player interactions. Riot’s very own Weszt Hart has been a key driver of the digital thriving work along with Kimberly Voll (Brace Yourself Games) who co-founded FPA, and Natasha Miller (Activision Blizzard).
Enter the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop, an independent research and innovation lab that focuses on the challenges of fostering smarter, stronger, and kinder children in a rapidly changing media landscape. The Cooney Center teamed up with FPA for the Designing for Digital Thriving project because they know the digital future will be a collective experience for all of us - including children - and it’s something that can only be tackled together.
Digital thriving goes beyond games—it's about making all digital spaces safer, both now and for future generations. The FPA and Cooney Center are working with a growing list of contributors to create and foster a collection of well-founded, promising, and proven approaches toward the development of a playbook for digital thriving. More info about the Designing for Digital Thriving project can be found on FPA’s website.
Opening the Challenge of Innovation to Everyone
Over the course of the last 11 years, IDEO has run over 70 Challenges with partners who feel passionate about creating positive impact in our world. Designing for digital thriving is uncharted territory, which is why Riot is excited to team up with IDEO to invite diverse perspectives and catalyze new ideas that can help build and sustain flourishing, thriving online spaces.
The “Designing for Digital Thriving Challenge” is open to academics, community managers, educators, designers, developers, innovators, parents, researchers, students, and all other individuals who are committed to designing for digital spaces. Participants from all over the world will be able to draw inspiration from three topic areas when creating their innovations and designs: “Designing for Marginalized Voices,” “Fostering Healthy and Resilient Digital Spaces,” and “Building a Future for Kids and Families.”
The winning submissions will receive funding and support from IDEO and Riot Games to help implement their ideas in hopes of establishing digital thriving as a high watermark for the industry as a whole. Winners will be announced in December 1, 2022. To learn more about the challenge and submit your designs please visit openideo.com.