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UB researchers turn the Board Games Festival into a scientific lab open to citizen participation

The experiment is carried out within the Board Games Festival DAU Barcelona, on 14 and 15 de December at Fabra i Coats - Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona.

The experiment is carried out within the Board Games Festival DAU Barcelona, on 14 and 15 de December at Fabra i Coats - Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona.

13/12/2013

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The University of Barcelona, through the Research Group OpenSystems from the Department of Fundamental Physics, participates in the second Board Games Festival DAU Barcelona and organises the collaborative scientific experiment "Mr Banks, the stock exchange game".

The experiment is included in the programme of the Board Games Festival DAU Barcelona, organised by the Institute of Culture of Barcelona (ICUB). The festival takes places on 14 and 15 December at Fabra i Coats - Fàbrica de Creació de Barcelona.

"As in any scientific experiment, we look for new data to know and explain better a phenomenon. In this case, we investigate the rational behaviour of individuals and, particularly, the mechanisms of decision making", explains Josep Perelló, from the Research Group OpenSystems of UB. The project uses the game "Mr Banks, the stock exchange game", designed by a group composed by scientists from UB and URV. The Festival has a well-equipped area to play the game.

 

The stock market as a tool to study human behaviour

Information related to financial markets is presented in a enjoyable way to participants; then, they are asked if the market will go up or down. By analysing the results obtained from the experiment, some questions will be answered, for instance: How does available information affects decision making? What kind of information do we consider and which one is worthier? How does success or failure influence previous decisions? Do we learn from experience?

Organisers hope to exceed the number of people who participate in last year's experiment, which also took place within DAU Barcelona. On that occasion two-hundred people participated in a game that measured people's trend to cooperate considering age. The game was designed by a group of scientists from UB, the University of Zaragoza and Carlos III University of Madrid.

"Mr Banks, the stock exchange game" has been designed by researchers Mario Gutiérrez Roig and Josep Perelló, from the Group OpenSystems of UB, and Jordi Duch and Juan Domingo Molina, from URV. Experts have also designed the game interface and included gamification strategies in order to encourage participation and rise game's attractiveness.

 

Citizen participation: a new way to create science

The experiment also aims at promoting citizen participation as a new central point of academic research. This new way of creating science, known as citizen science, in which citizens participate in a direct way in scientific experiments, is one of the commitments of the Research Group OpenSystems of UB, together with the Department of Creativity and Innovation of ICUB (Barcelona City Council).

The activity of the Research Group OpenSystems is based on community processes that seek to make the city and urban environments an open permanent science lab. The Group is committed to multidisciplinary and horizontal research, innovation and public engagement. Researchers use urban events to carry out collective scientific experiments as they did in the previous edition of DAU Barcelona or the Science and Technology Festival in 2012 and 2013 at the Ciutadella Park (in this case, by means of the experiment Bee-Path, on human mobility). The experiment "Mr Banks, the stock exchange game" is part of the Unit Citizen Science of the project Barcelona Lab, fostered by the Department of Creativity and Innovation of ICUB together with the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) and other universities.

 

 

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