From wargaming to peacegaming: digital simulations with peacekeeper roles needed

Tuesday 13 June 2023

Dorn, A. W., Webb, S., & Pâquet, S. (2020). International Peacekeeping, 27(2), 289-310.

In this article, the authors engage with the concept of peacebuilding in the process of designing video games. As part of the historical background, the authors firstly highlight the fact that wargames play an important role in helping the army to recruit soldiers. The second part of the article presents the use of peace gaming in UN peacekeeping projects and how different actors such as peacekeeping soldiers, scholars and general public can benefit from it. The authors also compare the differences between the two types of games, arguing that while wargames create a binary battlefield, peace gaming focuses more on resilience and cooperation. The authors highlight how peace gaming can be used to train peacekeepers, because peace gaming can improve soft skills such as communication, cultural sensitivity and gender awareness, as well as cooperation.

This article complements other library entries, which examine the role of UN peacekeepers in the peacemaking projects. By shining a spotlight on peacemaking through peace-gaming, it identifies a practical path for improving the effectiveness of UN peacemaking processes. For visitors interested in UN peacemaking projects, see Towards a human security approach to peacebuilding. For visitors interested in peace gaming, see our project website for more information on building peace through gaming.

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