In February 2020, leading researchers, game developers, educators, policymakers, youth experts, and others convened for an in-depth exploration of the forces shaping the culture and climate of online game communities and the impact of antisocial and toxic interactions on players ages 8-13. The goal: develop a shared agenda to guide future research and collaboration to make online gaming communities more youth-friendly and inclusive. A set of questions guided the workshop:

  • How might we develop and support gaming communities that cultivate empathetic, compassionate, and civically engaged youth?
  • What might it look like to develop youth’s socio-emotional capacities to positively shape the climate of gaming clubs and communities?
  • What role can the design of games, gaming communities, and associated technologies play in mitigating abuse?
  • How do we build the foundations of a healthy community directly into the platforms and communities themselves?

This report synthesizes outputs, learnings, and recommendations that emerged from the workshop. After framing the nature of the challenge, the report then shares a model of the problem space, describes areas of opportunity, and concludes with an overview of current efforts underway within the initiative.