Cross-Party Group On Videogames Technology – 11/12/13

Holyrood 002Last week saw the third cross-party group on videogames technology take place at the Scottish Parliament in Holyrood.  The group was created to give the video games and interactive sector representation within the parliament and address the issues facing the industry on a national level.

The minutes for the meeting have now been drafted – and we’re very grateful to Dr Malcolm Sutherland from the Computer Games Journal for recording them and making the available through the CGJ website.

A summary bullet-pointed list follows for the TL;DR crowd.

  • The meeting was chaired by Clare Adamson (Central Scotland), as Jenny Marra (North East Scotland) was engaged on other parlimentary business
  • Turnout was low thanks to uncertainty over confirmation e-mails and registration
  • The Scottish Games Network has been asked to act as the secretariat for future CPG meetings
  • The theme of the meeting was skills and training
  • The first speakers were David Martin & Mili Shikla from Skills Development Scotland who introduced the topics of the certificate of work readiness and outlined the organisations research and creation of a skills development plan for the creative industries which recognises the unique requirements of the video games sector.  They need employers for research and to help place new talent.
  • The second speakers were Alasdair Smith and Gina Jackson from Creative Skillset.  They have several initiatives to boost training and skills development within the games sector, including £16M from the UK government to target the creative industries.  They’re looking for industry level input and proposals from companies and institutions to create new opportunities within the sector.
  • Brian Baglow from the Scottish Games Network then gave a high speed introduction to the creation of the SGN and plans for it over the next 12 months.
  • The chair proposed the CPG meets three times per year.
  • Group discussion included issues of diversity, global recognition of games created in Scotland on a global basis and the creation of a dedicated innovation centre for games.  You can read details of the discussion in the minutes.

The presentations from both Creative Skillset and Skills Development Scotland were fascinating and will receive their own write-ups in the near future as they have a direct impact on the future of the games sector.

The position of secretariat is an important one.  From our basic understanding – means we take care of the organisation aspects of future meetings – securing dates, sending out notifications, invitations and confirmations, taking minutes and potentially securing sponsors (who pay for refreshments).

Participants in the meeting included Abertay University, Dare to be Digital, Codeplay, IGDA Scotland, UKIE, XBL Gamerhub, several independent developers, Adam Smith College, the University of the West of Scotland, Scottish Enterprise and others.

We’ll let everyone know as soon as the date for the next meeting is set, when we’ve found out exactly what the secretariat position involves and when topics for the agenda open.

You can find the minutes for the meeting here.  Thanks again to the Computer Games Journal.

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