Women in Games CEO Marie-Claire Isaaman will stand alongside other key industry leaders later this month when she takes part in the Westminster Media Forum, which will examine and discuss the next steps for the development and growth of the UK games industry.

This conference will provide an opportunity for key stakeholders and policymakers to assess strategy following the publication of the DCMS Video Game Research Framework in May 2023, which sets out principles for research into the impact of video games and gathering reliable data, to be utilised to support and grow the industry.

It also takes place following the announcement of a UK Games Fund grant from DCMS in September 2023, which aims to support emerging developers in turning their ideas into market-leading games.

Delegates will consider priorities for driving investment amidst concerns over a lack of a stable funding source for the industry. They will assess the impact of the Video Game Relief Tax, as well as assessing market dynamics and implications of M&A for the UK video games industry.

There will be discussions on developments in consumer preferences, use of advances in technology such as AI, and key trends in genres. Further sessions focus on wider issues around game content, monitoring age-appropriateness, online toxicity and developing a positive culture.

Marie-Claire will take part in a panel session with Ryan Locke, Head of Centre for Excellence in Games Education at Abertay University and Peter Cowling, Director of the iGGi. They will discuss: The video games workforce – education and skills development, career guidance and pathways, talent recruitment and retention, and promoting diversity, inclusion and positive marketplace cultures.

Other speakers include Dr Richard Wilson, CEO, TIGA; Daniel Wood, Acting CEO, Ukie; Emily Keaney, Deputy Commissioner of Regulatory Policy, Information Commissioner’s Office; Paul Durrant, Chief Executive Officer, UK Games Fund; and more.

Overall, areas for discussion will include:

  • policy and regulation: priorities and next steps for developing the video games industry in the UK – key market trends and opportunities – sector position within the creative industries
  • development and growth: sustaining sector growth – maximising the benefits of creative clusters – scaling up businesses – developing a national and international profile
  • investment and funding: support for financial sustainability – addressing funding concerns – developing sector attractiveness – assessing the economic impact of the video games industry
  • workforce and skills: reviewing sector-relevant education and training opportunities – recruiting and retaining UK talent – promoting diversity, inclusion and positive workplace cultures
  • safeguarding and games for good: monitoring age-appropriate content – creating positive in-game cultures – moving the use of games forward in ways that benefit players and wider society

The conference will be an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who are due to attend from the CMA; DBT; DCMS; DfE; DfT; DLUHC; DSIT; HMPPS; House of Commons Library; ICO; IPO; NCA; Ofcom; and The Scottish Government.

The conference will take place virtually and tickets to attend are available here – https://www.westminsterforumprojects.co.uk/book/Video-Games-24

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash