Ukie host AGM at EGX in Birmingham, announcements included:
- New research by Staffordshire University on the impact of participation in the Digital Schoolhouse Esports Tournament 2018
- Welcoming new members of the Ukie Board of Directors along with re-elected Board Directors
- Announcing 30 Years of Play - celebrating Ukie’s 30th birthday with a year of activities
BIRMINGHAM – 20 SEPTEMBER, 2018 - UK games and interactive entertainment trade body Ukie today launched a landmark study on how esports has the potential to transform careers education at its AGM. Other key announcements at the AGM included the latest additions to the board and the announcement of the 30 Years of Play campaign – celebrating the trade body’s 30th birthday in 2019.
The report, Esports: Engaging Education, is the first of its kind to formally review the impact of esports in school education including positive behavioral changes and influences on their career aspirations. Research was conducted by Staffordshire University, supported by Newman University, and was based on results from the Digital Schoolhouse Esports Tournament this year, the grand final of which was held during London Games Festival.
The 2017 - 2018 tournament saw over 2,000 students aged 12 - 18, from 20 schools across the UK, take part as either teams or as part of the school’s event management, social media, press and community team.
Key Findings of the study included:
- 82 per cent of players said they were more likely to participate in other team sports, as a result of taking part in the Digital Schoolhouse esports tournament
- 94 per cent said that taking part in the tournament made them more interested in computers/computing subjects
- 88 per cent of students said that taking part in the tournament made them more interested in a career in the video games industry
The results show that taking part not only improved skills and confidence but sparked their interest in subjects, job roles and opportunities they might not have thought were possible before.
The study also saw improvements in skills such as teamwork (80 per cent), communication (74 per cent), improved confidence skills as well as stronger friendship bonds over the course of the tournament (67 per cent).
The Ukie AGM, held at Birmingham’s EGX, also saw the announcement of Ukie’s 30 Years of Play campaign, which will be not only celebrate the birthday of the oldest games trade body in the world, but will also encourage the industry across the UK to celebrate the cultural contribution of the video games industry, as well as demonstrating the positive contribution of the sector over the last 30 years and looking to the next 30.
Ukie also announced its commitment to better member engagement with a new website in progress, designed for everyone to get the best out of their membership.
Ukie CEO Dr Jo Twist OBE said: “Today’s report on the Digital Schoolhouse Esports Tournament shows the meaningful impact games and esports can have on confidence levels, communication skills and interest in jobs of the future. With the skills gap we face in the UK; this study shows that esports can be an important bridge for introducing young people to important skills through games and interactive entertainment.”
Commenting on the announcement the 30 Years of Play year of celebrations, Jo added: “The 30 Years of Play campaign in 2019 will celebrate the impact that the games industry has had not just on our economy but our culture. As the oldest games trade body in the world, we are part of an important history in games, and we would like next year to give us all an opportunity to tell our stories in different ways. We want clusters across the country, companies, and individuals to be able to share their stories and histories too.
“Our fast-growing membership shows the growing diversity of the UK games and interactive entertainment ecosystem. We hope our new, bold branding and our new website will enable people and businesses to connect in more meaningful ways, and find the best practice guides, resources and help they need to thrive.”
Ukie also announced Des Gayle (Altered Gene), Andy Payne OBE (AppyNation), Stuart Dinsey (Curve Digital), Ian Livingstone CBE (Fusebox Games Ltd), Veronique Lallier (Hirez Studios), Noirin Carmody (Revolution Software Limited), Miles Jacobson OBE (Sports Interactive) were all elected on to the Ukie board this year.
Noirin Carmody, Founder Revolution Software and Chair of the Ukie Board of directors added: “It’s an honour and a privilege to serve again as chair of the Ukie board that reflects the diversity and breadth of the games industry. The Ukie team work tirelessly across a broad number of fronts, from online safety to education and skills in the workforce to supporting global trade, delivering real value to the industry. With a big year ahead, I believe Ukie is in great shape to deliver its ambition to make the UK the best place to make, sell and play games.”
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About UK Interactive Entertainment (Ukie)
Ukie (UK Interactive Entertainment) is the only trade body for the UK's games and interactive entertainment industry. A not-for-profit, it represents businesses of all sizes from small start-ups to large multinational developers, publishers and service companies, working across online, mobile apps, consoles, PC, esports, VR and AR.
Ukie aims to support, grow and promote member businesses and the wider UK games and interactive entertainment industry by optimising the economic, cultural, political and social environment needed for businesses to thrive.
Ukie works closely with the sector to influence government and decision makers, lobbying successfully for the 2014 Video Games Tax Relief, the UK Games Fund, and the Next Gen Skills campaign which resulted in a new Computer Science Curriculum. Ukie makes connections for businesses and help them access the opportunities a digital economy offers, via a successful International Trade programme, running UK Games Industry stands at the biggest international industry events.
It promotes the industry by working with the media to raise awareness of the sector’s positive cultural and economic contribution, as well as the societal benefits of games. Ukie runs askaboutgames.com, where families can learn about safe and sensible online practices, parental controls and age ratings.
Ukie’s skills work serves to increase inclusion and diversity, advocating a STEAM approach to education. Initiatives include the Digital Schoolhouse (DSH), Video Games Ambassadors (VGAs), a Student Membership scheme, and a professional development programme.
Ukie commissioned the Blueprint for Growth report in 2015, an independent review of the UK games industry with recommendations for decision makers in Parliament for how the industry can grow.
In 2016 Ukie partnered with Film London to deliver Games London, a ground breaking new three-year programme to promote the UK as the games capital of the world, the focal point of which is the annual London Games Festival.