TOP digital gaming professionals are speaking in York as the city hosts the launch of a new research project linking the industry with social science.

The University of York is today hosting the Game Intelligence event,, which marks the official launch of a new partnership research project.

Entitled New Economic Models and Opportunities for digital Games (NEMOG) the project will analyse game players’ habits, and look at how social and economic models can be introduced and monitored in games.

The event, held at the university’s Ron Cooke Hub, features two keynote speakers from the games industry: California-based Jeffrey Lin, who is lead designer of social systems at Riot Games, and Charles Cecil, founder and managing director of York-based Revolution Software.

Mr Lin will explain how “big data” can be used to design game systems and enhance and enable sportsmanship in online games, while Mr Cecil will discuss business models for games, particularly Revolution’s success with crowdfunding.

Professor Peter Cowling, from the University of York’s department of computer science, who is leading the NEMOG project, said: “The digital games market is an enormous and fast-growing industry with extraordinary impact, contributing more than £3 billion a year to the British economy.

He said: “We are looking at how we can harness the widespread enthusiasm for digital games to contribute to advances in society and science.

“For example, games can be used to test economic theories by analysing the artificial economies in online games, or as a means of collecting data for scientific investigations.

“We only need to persuade a small fraction of the games industry to consider the potential for social and scientific benefit to achieve a massive benefit for society.”

The NEMOG project is a partnership between the Universities of York, Durham and Northumbria; Cass Business School, City University London; and games companies and industry network associations.

Funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council, the NEMOG research consortium is examining actions made by players within games, and analysing player behaviours and preferences.