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Using Serious Games to Establish a Dialogue Between Designers and Citizens in Participatory Design: The Architectural Portal of People’s Narratives

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Abstract

The use of serious games in participatory design activities in architecture and planning has received growing attention in recent years. Their alternative ways of representing and communicating information have the potential to make the learning process more interesting and playful and hence more effective. This book chapter presents an alternative way to establish a dialogue between designers and citizens and raise citizens’ awareness of the urban environment and its architectural representation through the creation of an ‘Architectural Portal of People’s Narratives’ using a game engine. The research presents a theoretical, methodological and technical approach. The literature review includes definitions of participatory design and related issues, the use of 3D city models as participatory tools, 3d representations of city in videogames, and serious games as participatory tools. The final part of the chapter deals with the main points of the development process of the virtual Grainger Street (Newcastle upon Tyne, UK).