Workshop on Social Research and Pedagogy through Game Invention with Prof. Joseph Dumit

Dumit flyer

Fracking Systems, Earth Dispossessed: SocialResearchand PedagogythroughGameInvention A workshop and talk by Professor Joseph Dumit “Let us push ideas to the extreme, at the risk of being taken for extravagant” – Gabriel de Tarde, Monodology and Sociology


On Wednesday October 19th between 10:00 and 13:00, we’ll be hosting a workshop developed by Prof. Joe Dumit of UC Davis. Sign up here by Monday 17th.

In this workshop we will explore games as helpful ways of thinking through research and theory problems. We will use principles of game design to remix your research and discover unexpected actors, scales, verbs, points of view, and dynamic relations.

The workshop will explore what insights for social research and pedagogy can be generated by turning your research into critical games. The workshop will begin with a talk by Prof. Dumit on recent research into fracking infrastructures, including a demonstration of a digital game version of the research that he has developed with ModLab at UC Davis.

Frack the Game –

ModLab –

Talk Abstract: Is fracking not one such idea currently being pushed to the extreme, producing freakish landscapes while being represented as a walk in the park? This Imitating Tarde, as we are wont to do today, suggests that we investigate the how of repetition: social, vital and physical; imitative, hereditary and vibratory. Working with computer scientists and geologists as they haptically explore earth data – quake traces, landscape fractures, apocalyptic geographies, and speculative infrastructures – this paper wriggles their mode of analysis into STS, inquiring into theories’ vibrations.

This workshop is aimed at any one involved in research or teaching. No preparation is needed, however, please see additional relevant resources attached.

  • Paolo Pedercini, critical playthings course!-
  • his talk on it –
  • other examples –
  • Workshop here –
  • Critically approaching videogames – the-spirit-of-capitalism/
  • Why games? To think systems, capitalism, concepts: like this starting with monopoly – designed by Elizabeth Magie in 1904 to teach cumulative effects of land ownership
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