Simulations are the synthesis of theory and practice
We create learning experiences—focused on outcomes, execution, organizational leadership and collaboration—that prepare public policy students to tackle complex social issues.Contact Us
Turn good ideasinto real action
We build our simulations into serious games that communicate the complex nature of reality. Our simulations are generally web-based, allowing multiple players in multiple roles to interact simultaneously. Participants in the simulation can be located anywhere in the world, although we prefer same-site play as it encourages face-to-face interactions.
We also help university faculty develop course-specific simulations.
Metro: The Sustainable Transportation Simulation
Backed by real-world data, this simulation challenges participants to implement policies that make their city’s transportation infrastructure more sustainable. Participants take on roles such as City Manager, City Treasurer, and the Department of Health as they try to balance budgets, resolve conflicting interests, and work together in the interest of sustainability.
Host Nations Game
Built by Batten’s Center for Leadership Simulation and Gaming, Host Nations: A Refugee Simulation places participants in leadership roles (Prime Minister, Minister of Labor, etc.) of countries undergoing a migrant influx and challenges players with balancing budgets, economic growth, political resistance, and human rights.
In this fast-paced, real-time crisis simulation, students must work together to minimize the impact of a fictitious, yet deadly, infectious disease. Participants are placed in national leadership roles, working alongside teammates to enact policies that will save the lives of their stakeholders.
Situation Room Experience
Originally created by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, this immersive simulation puts participants in the thick of an international crisis. As members of the White House crisis management team, the intelligence community, and the media, participants exercise individual and collective leadership skills as they compete, collaborate, and above all communicate to solve time-sensitive issues.
Global Food Security Game
In this simulation, teams of participants make funding and programming decisions with the aim of achieving the U.N. Sustainable Goal of a hunger-free world by 2030. Players are tasked with improving food security in their region, tracked by 30 indicators that give a picture of food security in a specific country and region.
The UVA Bay Game
The UVA Bay Game has been played more than 200 times by groups ranging from local high school to U.S. Representatives. Players take on the responsibilities of real-world stakeholders who reside and make a living on the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, including crop farmers, land developers, watermen, and state-level policymakers. The product of an interdisciplinary project at UVA, the CLSG facilitates use of this simulation.
Can you survive a month in poverty? In this simulation, participants plays as members of impoverished families, community workers, and resource managers. They must figure out how to provide food and clothing for a family, make utility and loan payments on time, and help children through school, all while responding to unexpected events. By sensitizing participants to the realities of life faced by people with low incomes, this simulation aims to spur action and community engagement to mitigate poverty both in the U.S. and abroad.
Originally created by the Missouri Action Network, the CLSG facilitates the use of this simulation at Batten.
The goal of the Pensions Simulation is to demonstrate that there is no single technocratic answer to whether pensions should be expanded or cut back. Rather, most choices regarding pensions are driven by moral preferences and decisions as to who should work and how much. Students can manipulate a number of important parameters (retirement age, payouts, tax levels) and see their putative effects on important macro-economic variables.