research strands

Ludic Design

Acknowledging a paradigm shift in the history of humanity where digital culture no longer exists separately from the everyday, physical live experience, there is a need to rethink how meaningful engagement in such a hybrid environment can be configured and reconfigured. Ludic perspectives emphasise on the sense of autonomy, agency, ownership, and purpose in the design and facilitation of such engagement. 

This theme focuses on the transdisciplinary investigation into ludic design, practice, and culture with impact on socio-cultural development. It includes studies into the mechanics, dynamics, and aesthetics of play and gameplay for informing meaningful experience design.  

We explore play and gameplay as culturally relevant forms of creative and experiential systems and aesthetic expression that facilitate ludic experiences. The wide reach of play and gameplay is universal, providing opportunities for ludic design aspects to be embedded into mediums for communicating serious messages, affecting emotions in engaging stories and environments, and impacting attitudes and behaviours in the process. 

The theme’s work in this area involves experimenting with a wide range of practices aimed at removing the barriers to play and game design (including frugal design), understanding the impact of ludic design in various sectors, and exploring the potential of immersive and adaptive technologies for enhancing ludic experiences. 


Sylvester Arnab

Sylvester Arnab is a Professor of Game Science with a research focus on the investigation into engaging, empathic, and empowering experiences through the lens of playful and gameful design practices. Sylvester is a co-founder of the multi-award winning GameChangers initiative, focusing on open practice in playful and game-based learning. Gamechangers has informed empathic teaching and learning and community engagement in various countries, such as Indonesia, Malaysia, and Vietnam, towards responding to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. To date, Sylvester has successfully secured research funding with a total value of over £19 million since 2010 (£9.9 million as a principal investigator). Funders include the UKRI (AHRC and ESRC), European Commission (FP7, H2020, and Erasmus+), British Council, British Academy, and HEFCE. 

Personal website: 

Official website:  

Twitter: @sarnab75

Jayne Beaufoy

A highly experienced Senior Project Manager with a proven track record of managing Research Projects in the Higher Education sector, providing a high level of service to internal and external customers achieved by building strong professional relationships. With over twenty years’ experience Jayne is part of the GameChangers team at Coventry University working on international research projects including the CC 4.0 and ACES initiatives.

Petros Lameras

Petros is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Post-Digital Cultures (CPC), part of the Ludic Design team, Coventry University. His research work is around the use of AI, games and XR technologies for learning, teaching, and training. Petros is particularly interested in helping teachers and students to develop digital skills, playful cultures, and literacies with predominant focus on data, algorithmic and game-based design skills using co-creational and participatory approaches. The impact of his research has a pragmatic underpinning in terms of helping educators to develop competencies, skills, and capabilities in using digital applications and tools in their lived experiences. Petros co-leads the Research Enriched Learning initiative at CPC for emancipating ways, processes and strategies that facilitate the convergence between research and learning in a formal academic setting. Petros has taught computer science courses in subject areas such as mobile applications development, interactive media, and games technology. Petros has published more than 50 research papers and has participated in multimillion research and innovation projects that acted as catalysts to the formation of policy and strategies for the use of technology in education. Petros has collaborated with esteemed academic institutions (e.g., MIT) and commercial technology companies (e.g., Apple Inc.) for developing models, strategies, and processes for leveraging learning experiences with the use of digital media and technology

Mark Lewis

A specialist in the creation of new intellectual properties, user-interface, and user-experience design, Mark is a research assistant based at Coventry University and spent over a decade working as a designer within the games industry. He has worked on several highly successful videogame console titles; including six of Codemasters Formula One series, which won a BAFTA for Best Sports Game in 2010. His current role involves the design of game-based educational resources in the Escape Racism, eDigilit, and Dali international research projects.

Dominic Mahon

Dominic Mahon is a research fellow at Coventry University in the UK. His research interests lie in the development of competencies, capabilities, and resilience through playful approaches to learning. He has worked at universities in the UK, Vietnam, Turkey, and Kazakhstan over a teaching career of over 20 years.

Alex Masters

Alex is an innovation technologist, multimedia designer, and practiced-based researcher, based in the UK. His interests focus on innovation, sustainability, and education, and his research practice explores the concept of Frugal Education; leveraging accessible and available resources, trailing edge-technologies, and innovative approaches to create engaging, practical, and sustainable education. Alex has amassed over twenty years’ experience in the field of multimedia design, with a career spanning a multitude of disciplines including web development, graphic design, journalism, photography, information technology, education innovation, and practice-based research. Alex is a co-founder of the GameChangers initiative and senior fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 

Twitter: @alexmasters


a child using a pipette and a test tube. Other children are smiling behind him.



a child with a colouring pencil smiles at the camera.

CreativeCulture 4.0


a crowd of people standing under a wooden hut structure

Escape Racism


greyscale image of a crowd of people



a person with long hair shrouded in shadow with red binary code projected on their face.



four hands hold white jigsaw puzzle pieces



a cartoon city with several monuments highlighted in orange



a road with trees on either side stretching to the horizon.




(descending by date)

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