Baltic Sea Game Incubation: Piloting Network Activities to Foster Game Incubation in the BSR (BSGI)

The extension project “Baltic Sea Game Incubation – Piloting Network Activities to Foster Game Incubation in the BSR” (BSGI) builds upon the BGI-project and continues to work on boosting the game industry in the Baltic Sea Region – giving special attention to capacity building. Its main objective is to enhance business support of game incubators through strategic transnational collaboration with other game incubators in the Baltic Sea region (BSR). Joining forces in transnational cooperation will significantly raise the impact on industry development as opposed to acting alone. A viable international incubation network, a standardised incubation approach with powerful support tools and the expansion of the talent pool will enable young game studios and game developers to compete successfully in the game market and turn it into a growth market. The lead is again with the BGZ Berliner Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit mbH.

Activities
BSGI will demonstrate the efficiency of transnational activities in three areas: incubation partners, internationalisation, knowledge transfer. BGI focused on capacity building for implementing a dedicated game start-up programme. BSGI takes this a step further, enhancing this capacity in terms of moulding strong partners, heightening the quality of tuition for internationalisation skills of start-ups, shaping a standardised approach to incubation – challenges that can best be tackled by transnational collaboration. This will involve developing further the skills of incubator staff, mentors and investors as well as installing effective support services for game sector start-ups.

Competence Building Pilots for Game Mentors and Investors

A set of competence building pilots – online training sessions for investors and mentors, will show how mentors and investors can be involved effectively in game incubation efforts. Mentors can provide knowledge on the lifecycle and value chain of game development to start-ups and investors can form a partnership with start-ups. Therefore, mentors and investors are vital to the success of game incubuation. The competence building pilots will increase the availability of these competent players by joint actions of the incubators. Participating investors and mentors will be from all over the Baltic Sea region.

Transnational Game Incubation Pilot

Themed transnational workshops for exchange on transnational incubation and a summer academy for the game start-up scene will show in detail how game incubation programmes work in practice and how international cooperation of the network benefits the game sector start-ups. Participants – start-ups, mentors, coaches, tutors, incubation managers – will come from all over the Baltic sea region, to ensure access to a transnational mix of experience and feedback from their various perspectives. The transnational incubation actions will not only promote the internationalisation of the incubators, but will also bring together the young development studios. It will demonstrate the potential of transnational cooperation to game companies.

Access to Knowledge about Game Incubation

The online roadmap created in the course of the predecessor project BGI will be further enriched to form a sustainable body of knowledge of incubation practices for the game industry. The tool will be tested both for its usefulness for ingesting different content and discovering and retrieving it as a user. Based on these tests, expert users will evaluate the power of the roadmap as a portal to access and offer knowledge and information as well as its functionality to allow for a growing body of game incubation knowledge in the future. As the Baltic Sea region is the European region where most game incubators are currently in operation and where many new incubation programmes are being initiated, it will be the major beneficiary from the enhanced roadmap. It will also help strengthen the recognition of the transnational game incubation network as a source of expertise and thus attract new members to the network and facilitate a strong commitment to transnational collaboration.

Outputs
Two white papers will illustrate solutions for competence building measures of mentors and investors as well as for the internationalisation of incubation. The enhanced online roadmap will form a sustainable body of knowledge of incubation practices for the game industry.

White Paper on Competence Building for Mentors and Investors

The White Paper on Competence Building for Mentors and Investors will provide recommendations for future competence building measures, the added value of the transnational component and how to follow-up on these measures, i.e. how to make this a sustainable asset in terms of an increase of competent mentors available to the BSR incubation network and grooming new investors for the BSR game industry will be addressed.

White Paper on Transnational Incubation

The White Paper on Transnational Incubation will provide a full documentation of the pilots for heightening the quality and fostering opportunities of international incubation through transnational collaborative actions. It will retrace the decision-making process, outline the rationale behind the approaches and provide details of the programme design of the various formats (camp, webinar, workshop), execution and post-processing, as well as considerations on the impact of such activities for a transnational network in the future.

Enchanced Baltic Sea Game Incubation Roadmap

The Enchanced Baltic Sea Game Incubation Roadmap will integrate all knowledge acquired within the BGI and BSGI projects as an online tool and demonstrate, what types of content can be ingested and how the body knowledge can mature and be organised to ensure sustainable use. It will provide access to a sustainable body of knowledge for game incubators and other supporters of the game industry throughout the Baltic Sea region and beyond.

  •   Copyright: © BGZ & Mindaugas Mikulėnas

Partnership
Incubators, technology parks, universities, business development agencies and authorities from six countries around the Baltic Sea form the project partnership. Lead partner is BGZ, further partners are Creative Crowd AB, Dania Academy, HTW Berlin, Invest Stockholm, Lithuanian Innovation Centre, Metropolia University, Tartu Teaduspark and Turku Game Hub. Further 25 associates support the project BSGI as associates, such as the State of Berlin, Tartu City, media:net, Interactive Denmark, Neogames, Kaunas Tech Park, Sting and East Sweden Game.