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Winrock International

ECO Games

The ECO Game is a fun learning tool designed by Winrock International that educates players about the different impacts their community decisions can have on water, environment, income, and the long-term potential for communities to thrive. Four games have been developed as part of the ECO Game suite of tools, each with different focus areas and key learning outcomes:

The ECO Games present exciting and effective ways to introduce concepts of resilience, ecosystem services, and water security to classrooms and communities of all ages and backgrounds.

Players split into teams, each representing a small local community. They select from a set of land uses and/or water security activities, each providing specific resources and resilience. Over several rounds, players must survive natural disasters and other chance events while maintaining enough resources to meet household needs. Through game play, communities effectively learn to build resilience through their decisions and broaden their understanding of the importance of sustaining ecosystem services. These games aim to improve long-term community well-being by facilitating stakeholder participation in decision-making and increasing environmental and climate literacy.

In early 2018, Winrock staff piloted the game with a set of communities in Northern Ghana to collect feedback from communities and evaluate how components of the game could be strengthened. Response from communities was overwhelmingly positive and the strength of this game-based approach was clearly shown. Communities were highly engaged during game play, and after were able to independently discuss the impact land use choices had on food and energy production, water needs, and resilience.

Caribbean Climate Resiliency Eco Game

The CCR Game is an interactive, role-playing game focused on agricultural adaptation, climate change and resilience where players gain critical thinking and decisions making skills through experimental learning. Players represent local farmers and landowners who experience the impacts of their natural resource management decisions can have on long-term resilience to climate change.

Game Board
Land Use Cards
Resilience Activities
Agricultural Chance Cards
Community Chance Cards
Moderator Guide

ECO Game: Northern Ghana

The ECO Game: Northern Ghana was designed to help improve sustainable community land use planning through the USAID’s Agriculture and Natural Resource Management (AgNRM) project. Two versions of the ECO Game: Northern Ghana are available for download, tailored to best suit the needs of different users:

Small Game Package: Designed for individual or smaller group play, with Land Use cards sized to be a half-page to lower printing burden.

Large Game Package: Designed for group/community play, with Land Use Cards sized to be one full page to enhance visibility among larger teams.

ECO Game: Ghana Deforestation-Free Cocoa

In this version of the game, players interactively explore challenges and balance the tradeoffs associated with rehabilitating cocoa farms and maintaining forest cover in a landscape where land is scarce and where the boom-or-bust draw of gold mining offers short-term gains. The game materials can be downloaded here.

Instructions Handout
Land Use Cards
Chance Cards

ECO Game: Water Security

The ECO Game: Water Security is tailored to water security risks and needs in the Stung Chinit Basin, simulating experiences that these rural farming communities might face in ways they can quickly understand and relate to. The game materials can be downloaded here:

Instructions Handout
Game Board
River Basin Cards
Land Use Cards
Water Security Activity Cards
Community Chance Cards
Watershed Chance Cards
Game Tokens
Land Use Cards (4 cards per page)
Moderator Guide