Author: Raffaele Prettato
As it is known, the main aim of the Game Subcommittee is to enhance access to the Program and knowledge about the EPPO through the development of a VR game. For that reason, a new collaboration with the MiBTec laboratory and with Agenfor has been implemented.
MiBTec is an innovative laboratory, founded in 2018, which is part of the Department of Psychology of University of Milano-Bicocca. Thanks to its modern and innovative equipment (i.e. interactive CAVEs systems, simulators, immersive virtual environments and portable viewers) and to its personnel (made up of a network of experts in the fields of psychology, information engineering and interaction design), the laboratory carries out scientific research on the interaction between the human being and technologies, such as virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR).
Agenfor is a private association which has been operating in the field of the professional training for 25 years with the goal to offer services in line with the demands of the labor market and with the wishes of their customers. Agenfor strongly believes that the proper use of technology can be an added value for the educational and training processes and for that reason it strongly invests in educational technology.
On 14 November 2022, a meeting between the member of the Game Subcommittee, of the MiBTec and of Agenfor took place at the MiBTec laboratory to define work program for the development of a Serious Game (i.e. a VR game with an educational aim) devoted to the issue of the EPPO activity in the fight against financial crimes harmful for the financial interests of EU. The meeting was attended by Benedetta Ubertazzi (Jean Monnet Module Coordinator and associate Professor of EU Law in Milano-Bicocca School of Law), Fabrizia Bremer (chair of Game Subcommittee and member of the Ministry of Justice), Alberto Gallace (associate Professor of Psychobiology and director of MiBTec), Sergio De Vita and Massimiliano Crivellari (members of Agenfor).
During the meeting, Alberto Gallace conducted a guided tour of the innovative laboratory for all the other participants. During that tour all the infrastructure and the equipment of the laboratory (two interactive CAVEs, the OCOLUS viewers, the Cyberith Virtualizer, the Optitrack device for the movement tracking and the workstations) have been shown and explained and the laboratory offered the opportunity to personally test its technology, in particular the workstations used to create a Serious Game on the sea pollution dedicated to elementary students and an interactive and immersive experience in a Roman domus.
At the end of the tour, the group worked to define a brand-new Serious Game devoted to the issue of the EPPO activity in the protection of EU financial interests. These efforts resulted in a first draft of storyboard of the future Serious Game in which 10/15 people (University and High school students, lawyers, police officers and judges) can take part. The game will reproduce a plausible case of carousel fraud and the participants will be obliged to participate playing a role different from the one they are used to play in real life. The aim of the Serious Game is in fact twofold: on the one hand it will be useful to increase the knowledge and the awareness about the fundamental activity of EPPO in the fight against transboundary financial crimes and on the other hand it will allow to gather interesting data on the exchange of roles and of perspectives.
The group continues to hardly work to design and create the Serious Game within the end of the STEPPO classes.