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Professor David Bassuk Helps Youth in Iraq

He co-wrote an alternate reality game that inspired action via a Hackathon.

Professor of Acting David Bassuk has been working with UNAMI, The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq, a team working for peace in that country. He co-wrote an alternate reality game with a Kurdish writer aimed at building awareness of climate, water, and oxygen safety, which led to a launch in four cities in the Kurdish region of Iraq.

This spurred the first “hackathon” where teams motivated by the game proposed innovative approaches to building further awareness and also exploring solutions.

Bassuk spent the day with the @futurers.2050 Youth Climate Action Hackathon that took place in Kurdistan region. He met with 14 competing teams helping lead them toward creative forms of engagement and social activism drawing on alternate reality games, participatory theatre, and immersive storytelling, among others. He was one of three helping them build pitches for government funding and support.

The purpose of the input was to spark the participants’ imagination and move beyond traditional ideas. “Change through implementation, transformation through participation, attract and engage through innovative design, activating the audience.”