Welcome to CHBS/CISE International!
- Call for Spring 2013 CHBS/CISE International Grant Applications!
- Special Event February 25, 2103
With a project funded by CISAT International (now CHBS/CISE International), Dr. Mike Deaton (ISAT Department), Jacob Mayiani (MSISAT program student), and Dr. Jennifer Coffman (oIP/ISAT Department) piloted a study for helping Maasai communities in Southern Kenya to explore cattle management strategies in a challenging physical environment. Deaton and Mayiani created the game “Eramat!” (a game named for “Mind your cattle!” in the Maa language). Eramat! provides a fun and culturally-anchored learning environment in which players can experience how their actions interact between an accelerating growth in cattle holdings and devastating cattle losses during drought. During these drought “bust” periods, 90% of cattle can die, creating severe hardship for the people who depend on cattle for food and income. The Eramat! game helps people understand this escalating environmental crisis. Since these dynamics can take many years to play out, Deaton and Mayiani wanted to find a way for the Maasai to experience things in “fast-forward time”.
Deaton, Mayiani (a native to Kenya) and Coffman (a scholar of Kenya peoples) piloted the Eramat! game during spring 2012 with multiple Maasai communities. With the game, Maasai players cycled through the four seasons of the year and were confronted with the uncertainties of rainfall levels, varying prices for cattle, and “life events” such as lion attacks or opportunities for social alliances through marriage. Please join us for a presentation of their work and a hands-on experience capturing the essence of the Eramat! game on Monday February 25 in ISAT/CS 136 from 6 pm -7:30pm. Help us collect data to see how the game might further impact decision making and pastoralist practices in the region in the future!