This project focuses on understanding the people behind the games: game developers and their work. Nancy Zenger is starting with a pilot study in Montreal, interviewing local independent game developers to learn about the evolving practices of digital labour. Of course, Montreal is only the starting point. We’ll be talking to independent developers in other cities as well. This segues into larger project for the team: DIGILAB.
DIGILAB is short for Digital Labour: Authors, Institutions and New Media. It’s part of the larger Graphics, Animation and New Media Centres of Excellence. GRAND NCE for short. GRAND is a research network focused on growing Canada’s digital media sector. It links together computer scientists and engineers with artists, designers and social scientists, and develops ways for researchers to climb out of the ivory tower and partner with organizations and corporations. It also looks to inform Canada’s digital media policy and practice.
The goal of the Indie, Eh project feeds into DIGILAB. We want to better understand the values as well as the practical needs of independent game developers in Montreal. And so, through interviews, ethnographic fieldwork, and other partnerships, we’re busy gathering feedback from the local development community to inform future research directions and build stronger partnerships between TAG and the game industry.