Journal cover Journal topic
Geoscience Communication An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
Journal topic
Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/gc-2019-8
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gc-2019-8
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 17 May 2019

Submitted as: research article | 17 May 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Geoscience Communication (GC).

Flash Flood! – A SeriousGeoGame combining science festivals, video games, and virtual reality with research data for communicating flood risk and geomorphology

Chris Skinner Chris Skinner
  • Energy and Environment Institute, University of Hull

Abstract. The risk of flooding around the world is large and increasing yet in many areas there is still a difficulty in engaging the public with their own flood risk. Geomorphology is a science which is linked to flooding and can exacerbate risks but awareness of the science with the public is low, and declining within academia. To increase awareness it is important to engage the public directly with the science and those who are working to reduce flood risks – this starts by inspiring people to seek out further information through positive experiences of the science and researchers. Here, a new framework is presented to engage the public with specific research projects by using the best components offered by the popular mediums of games, virtual reality, and science festivals, to allow the public to get hands on with research data and models – SeriousGeoGames. A SeriousGeoGame, Flash Flood!, was developed around real geomorphology survey data to help engage the public with a flood risk related research project by placing them in a river valley as it undergoes a geomorphically-active flooding from intense rainfall event. Flash Flood! was exhibited at science festivals and similar events in the UK by scientists on the project, and supported with online content including videos. Through event feedback it was shown to create positive experiences for participants and inspired curiosity as seen through online analytics. This is hoped to inspire more fruitful engagements with relevant agencies in the future when it matters most.

Chris Skinner
Interactive discussion
Status: final response (author comments only)
Status: final response (author comments only)
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Chris Skinner
Chris Skinner
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Latest update: 23 Aug 2019
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Short summary
This study demonstrates how the popular mediums of video games, virtual reality, and science festivals can be combined with research data to produce useful tools for engaging the public with geosciences. Using the Flash Flood! simulation it is demonstrated that the approach produces positive engagements and increases curiosity about flood risk and geomorphology – this is hoped to plant the seeds for fruitful engagements in the future with relevant agencies.
This study demonstrates how the popular mediums of video games, virtual reality, and science...
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