Programme Session Details 2024

Educational Escape Room Design and Aspects of Systemic Thinking (in economics)

Corresponding Author: Bernd Remmele

All authors:

Length: 30 minutes


There is a set of aspects of systemic thinking (mostly: emergence, feedback, inside/outside, functional integrity, …). Advanced economic thinking is highly systemic, as its main conceptual core is the emergent market equilibrium based on the feedback mechanism of price(s), while it’s functioning by the exchange goods against (mainly) money defining its realms. Apart from that the usual economic abstraction and modelling of aggregate behaviour also often uses systemic approaches (e.g. adverse selection or social dilemma). However consequently for the individual the economic system(s) is often opaque and uncertain in its processing.
The author is part of project, started in 2023, that aims at using educational escape rooms to improve systemic thinking in economics. At first sight there seems to be a discrepancy in this endeavour: While eER typically consists of challenges with clear results to open ‚locks‘ and story plots with a single (team) protagonist reaching a happy escape, systemic thinking implies challenges with uncertainty and stories with complex interaction potentially leading to crashes.
During the session relevant aspects of systemic thinking (referring to the pertinent competences) will be shortly explained on basis of economic examples. Ideas for specific challenges/locks and story plots will be presented and – as far as possible – layfully discussed. The emergence of further ideas during the session is pursued.

References, web links and other resources:

The author has previously been working in (projects dealing with) the development of educational escape rooms, e.g.:
His fixation with the mentioned discrepancy between the systemic structure of social systems and the rather rigid structure of escape rooms is caused by the not fully satisfactory work on a kind of online escape room, which teaches on scarcity and opportunity cost: (in German and a trainer account needs to be set up …)