First-ever International Conference on Game Jams, Hackathons, and Game Creation Events (ICGJ 2016)

Following up from our very successful series of workshops in the past few years, we are pleased to announce the first-ever International Conference on Game Jams, Hackathons, and Game Creation Events (ICGJ 2016).

This will be a one-day conference held on March 13, 2016.

Game jams and Hackathons have become popular activities with their own unique culture and communities. Often held in a confined space for a limited duration of time, these activities offer enormous technological and social benefits for their many participants. Studies of these events can be conducted around the technical creation aspect of the activity, as well as its social and educational dynamics The research area now has a diverse and dedicated following of scholars.

Full and short papers

We invite contributions on all aspects of game creation events using scholarly methods. Descriptions of new algorithms, processes and scientific findings as well as empirical studies of implementations and applications are welcome. Submissions can be full papers about results from novel research (up to 8 pages long) or short papers describing works in progress (up to 4 pages long).

 Position papers

As the scholarship of game creation events is in its very early stages, we welcome submission of position papers on major themes or directions of this field. Though essentially opinion based, the position paper submissions should nevertheless contain research with arguments fully supported by specific references. Position papers should considered short papers for the purposes of length and submission system.

 Showcase presentations

We invite contributions from the creators of games and apps that were created in a recent game jam or hackathon. The creator(s) are required to submit a demonstration of their game and a written synopsis of the game. The creator(s) of the game will be provided the opportunity to demonstrate the game at the conference. The synopsis should be limited to one page. The synopsis will be published as part of the proceedings. These submissions will be editorially (non-peer) reviewed.


The topics can include (but are not limited to):

  • Communication skills
  • Community building
  • Creativity
  • Game design issues in Game jams
  • Game jam attendance: who and why?
  • Game jam impacts
  • Game jam methodologies
  • Group dynamics
  • Hackathons
  • Ideation
  • Learning in game jams
  • Maker spaces
  • Rapid application development
  • Team formation
  • Tools and technologies

Organizing Committee


  • Allan Fowler – Kennesaw State University, USA

Conference Chairs

  • Allan Fowler – Kennesaw State University, USA
  • Foaad Khosmood – California Polytechnic State University, USA

Proceedings Chair

  • Foaad Khosmood – California Polytechnic State University, USA

Program CommitteeAli Arya, Carleton University, Canada

  • Allan Fowler, Kennesaw State University, USA.
  • Annakaisa Kultima, University of Tampere, Finland
  • Brian McDonald, Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland
  • Foaad Khosmood, California Polytechnic State University, USA.
  • Johanna Pirker, Graz University of Technology, Austria.
  • Jon Preston, Kennesaw State University, USA
  • Menno Deen, Fontys University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands.
  • Mirjam Eladhari, University of Malta, Malta
  • Nia Wearn, Staffordshire University, UK
  • Ryan J Locke, Abertay University, Scotland
  • William Goddard, RMIT University, Australia


At the end of the conference, there will be a short awards ceremony. The awards are:

  • Best full paper award
  • Best short paper award
  • Best showcase presentation award


Paper submission due 5 February 2016
Showcase submission due 2 February 2016
Notification of decisions 29 February 2016
Camera ready due 6 March 2016
Registration due 4 March 2016
Conference dates 13 March  2016

Paper Submission

Authors are invited to submit original research contributions, following the instructions below:

Remove author names, and any additional information in the paper that could be used to identify the paper authors. Any submissions that are not formatted to the ACM specification or include any author identification will be returned to the authors. Submissions must be in PDF format and follow ACM SIG proceedings format.

Papers should be submitted to the conference Easychair site.

All papers are peer reviewed and will be published in the ICGJ 2016 Conference Proceedings and included in the ACM Digital Library.
If you have any questions regarding the submission process, please use the following email address:


Registration is via Eventbright. 

Date and Location

March 13, 2016. David Brower Center, Berkeley, California


Please feel free to contact us through

Book recommendations

This is my personal recommendation for a reading list. And also a list of books I use for the lecture.

*** Jane McGonigal – Reality is Broken
One of my favourite books. Jane McGonigal gives some inspirations and ideas of how to use games in different contexts. Reads like a novel and avoids theoretical aspects.
*** Jesse Schell – The Art of Game Design
This is the book I am using a lot for my lecture. Very good summary of the most important design aspects from different points of view (technical aspects, player psychology, all different design things).
*** Scott Rogers – Level Up (2nd Edition)
Also a very good design on game design. I’ve especially enjoyed the bonus chapters with inspirational lists for environments, game mechanics, and different templates as inspirational resource for your games.
** Jeremy Gibson – Introduction to Game Design, Prototyping, and Development
This book gives also a very nice introduction on game design techniques, but in a more practical manner. The main part of this book is a unity and C# tutorial.
** Raph Koster – A Theory of Fun
I simple love the style of this book. It has comics and sketches 😉
* Flow – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Wonderful book (THE book) about the flow experience with neat examples from all different fields.
* Katie Salen & Eric Zimmerman – Rules of Play
Very interesting book on game design with a lot of practical examples.

Note: Amazon credit me a small referal amount, should you purchase a book after following these links.

Call for Special Tracks and Workshops – iLRN Santa Barbara 2016

Call for Special Tracks and Workshops
Immersive Learning Research Network Conference 2016:
iLRN Santa Barbara 2016
June 27th – July 1st, 2016
Santa Barbara, California, USA

Join immersive learning experts and practitioners from across the disciplines in sunny California for iLRN 2016! The 2nd Annual International Conference of the Immersive Learning Research Network will be an innovative hands-on and scholarly meeting for an emerging global network of developers, educators, and research professionals collaborating to develop the scientific, technical, and applied potential of immersive learning. Following an outstanding inaugural event in Prague in 2015, this conference will be held on the campus of The University of California – Santa Barbara from June 27th – July 1st, 2016. Organized by Appalachian State University in conjunction with Oregon State University, Graz University of Technology and University of Essex, the theme of this 2nd Annual iLRN conference will be “The Versatilist”, which is also the title of iLRN’s official podcast hosted by iLRN General Chair Patrick O’Shea: found at

Topics of interest in the context of immersive environments for the main conference include:

• Immersive Technologies, Systems and Devices
• Natural and Built Environments as Immersive Learning Spaces
• Cognitive and Pedagogical Analysis
• Learning and Training Applications
• Non­-leisure Games and Gamification
• A Glance into the Future: Innovations, Challenges and Applications
• Games and Entertainment
• Art and Creativity
• Cultural Heritage

iLRN 2016 is keen to cover and provide a platform for emerging and community driven topics. Thus the conference will feature a number of co-located Special Tracks and Workshops which are intended to provide a forum for researchers and practitioners in immersive environments and education to discuss positions on current and emergent topics.

Special Tracks
Special Tracks are intended to be a forum for quality scientific research, which will be presented in scientific talks. Contributing papers have to undergo a peer review process and will be included in the conference proceedings, depending on the overall quality and track chair’s decision, either as a full paper (10 pages) or as a short paper (6 pages).
Get more information:

Workshop contributions are intended to cover a variety of aspects (from idea stages to practical experiences) in different presentation forms (such as talks, demonstrations, hands-on demo papers or round-table discussions). Expected contributions can include scientific short papers (6 pages), or are required to be summarized in an abstract (1 page), and have to undergo an appropriate quality control.

Get more information:

• Special Tracks and Workshop Proposals Submission: November 15, 2015
• Acceptance Announcement: December 1, 2015
For submitting proposal, please use the submission system and select the proper track to add your submission.

Review and Publication
All submitted special track and workshop proposals will be reviewed by the Special Track Co-chairs and selected board members following the quality aspects published in the detailed call text. Please refer for the quality aspects to
iLRN conference series is currently under review for publishing in the CCIS Springer series. All full papers following the quality standards (40 % acceptance rate for Special Tracks) will be added in the indexed conference proceedings. The other papers will be added to a non-index proceedings volume assigned by an ISBN and ISSN number and is only online accessible.

Conference Organization
• General Chair: Patrick O’Shea, Appalachian State University, USA
• General Chair: Christian Gütl, Graz University of Technology, Austria
• Vice Chair: Michael Gardner, University of Essex, UK
• Program Co­-Chair: Colin Allison, University of St Andrews, UK
• Program Co­-Chair: Leonel Caseiro Morgado, Universidade Aberta, Portugal
• Special Track Co-­Chair: Ken Hudson, stealth mode startup, Ontario, Canada
• Special Track Co­-Chair: Johanna Pirker, Graz University of Technology, Austria
• Workshops Co-­Chair: Scott Warren, University of North Texas, USA
• Workshops Co­-Chair: Rainer Malaka, University Bremen, Germany
• Publicity & Public Relations: Anasol Peña-­Rios, University of Essex, UK
• Publications Chair: Dennis Beck, University of Arkansas, USA
• Sponsor Chair: Jonathon Richter, Salish Kootenai College, USA
• Local Chair: J​atila Van Der Veen, University of California ­ Santa Barbara, USA
International Chairs
• International – North America Co-Chair: Jennifer B. Elliott, University of North Carolina, USA
• International – South America Co-Chair: Lynn Alves, UFBA, Brazil
• International – South America Co-Chair: Andreas Pester, Carinthia University of Applied Sciences, Austria
• International – Asia Pacific Co-Chair: Henry Been-Lirn Duh, University of Tasmania, Australia
• International – Europa Co-Chair: Francesco Gabellone, CNR IBAM Lecce, Italy
• International – Europa Co-Chair: Fotis Liarokapis,Masaryk University, Czech Republic
• International – Middle East Co-Chair: Mohammad Al-Smadi, Jordan University of Science and Technology, Jordan
• Internationa l- Middle East Co-Chair: Samir Elseoud, American University, Egypt
• International – Africa Chair: Mathy Vanbuel, Audiovisual Technologies, Informatics & Telecommunications, Belgium

iLRN Advisory Board
• Jon Dorbolo, Oregon State University, USA
• François Garnier, École Nationale Supériore des Arts Décoratifs, France
• Béatrice Hasler, University of Barcelona, Spain
• Pasi Mattila, Center for Internet Excellence, Finland
• Jonathon Richter, Salish Kootenai College, USA
Program Committee (to be expanded)
• Mohammad Al-Smadi, Jordan University of Science and Technology
• Colin Allison, University of St Andrews
• Jannicke Baalsrud, Hauge Bremer Institut für Produktion und Logistik /University of Bremen
• Panagiotis Bamidis, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
• Michael Derntl, RWTH Aachen University
• Justin Ehrlich, Western Illinois University
• Kai Erenli, UAS bfi Vienna
• Mikhail Fominykh, Europlan UK Ltd
• Michael Gardner, University of Essex
• Lisa Gjedde, Aalborg Universitet
• Christian Gütl, Graz University of Technology
• Béatrice Hasler, University of Barcelona
• Christothea Herodotou, The Open University
• Margit Höfler, University of Graz
• María Blanca Ibáñez, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
• Monique Janneck, Fachhochschule Lübeck
• Bruno Joho, Lucerne University of Applied Science and Arts
• Dominic Kao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
• Ferial Khaddage, Deakin University
• Ralf Klamma, RWTH Aachen University
• Timo Koskela, University of Oulu / CIE
• Milos Kravcik, RWTH Aachen University
• Jochen Kuhn, University of Kaiserslautern
• Narayanan Kulathuramaiyer, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak
• Stefanie Lindstaedt, Graz University of Technology & Know-Center
• Daniel Livingstone, Digital Design Studio, Glasgow School of Art
• David Lowe, The University of Sydney
• Markos Mentzelopoulos, University of Westminster
• Alok Mishra Atilim, University, Incek 06836, Ankara – Turkey
• Leonel Morgado, INESC TEC / Universidade Aberta
• Stylianos Mystakidis, University of Patras
• Max North, Southern Polytechnic State University
• Patrick O’Shea, Immersive Learning Research Network
• Abelardo Pardo, The University of Sydney
• Ignazio Passero, Dipartimento di Matematica ed Informatica, Università degli Studi di Salerno, Italy
• Anasol Peña-Ríos, University of Essex
• Indika Perera, University of Moratuwa
• Johanna Pirker, Graz University of Technology
• Jonathon Richter, University of Oregon
• Demetrios Sampson, University of Piraeus
• Andreas Schmeil, University of Lugano (USI)
• Wolfgang Slany, Institute of Software Technology, Graz University of Technology
• John Venable, Curtin University of Technology
• Scott Warren, University of North Texas
• Annika Wiklund-Engblom, MediaCity, Åbo Akademi University
• Fridolin Wild, The Open University

About iLRN’s Annual International Conference
ILRN’s annual conference provides an intensive face­to­face opportunity for the emerging professional community of immersive learning to collaborate and create the immersive learning future at world­class destinations. ILRN conferences offer knowledge exchange and open discussions in scientific presentation streams, poster sessions and panels. The Hands­-on demonstration stream combines short paper presentations with hands­-on opportunities for attendees. We seek members of the ILRNetwork, itself, to propose pre­conference Workshops and Special Tracks throughout covering emerging topics and trends relevant to the community. Additionally, “Ignite Sessions” further enable participants to present and share their work or interest in a fun and speedy way. The international conference offers a platform to explore and initiate new research development collaborations, and provide research consortiums, new products, and entrepreneurs room to share their work.​

Come and immerse yourself in scholarship, innovation, and fun!