Equality = Inequality: Probing Equality-Centric Design and Development Methodologies

  • Rilla Khaled
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6947)


A number of design and development methods, including participatory design and agile software development, are premised on an underlying assumption of equality amongst relevant stakeholders such as designers, developers, product owners, and end users. Equality, however, is not a straightforwardly accepted feature of all cultural perspectives. In this paper, we discuss the situation of equality-centric methods in a culturally mixed setting. We present a case study of the Girl Game Workshop, a game development event intended to empower young women through game design and to promote diversity in game creation. While conducting the workshop, the organisers encountered numerous issues, which presented challenges to their assumptions of the desirability of an emphasis on equality during game design and development. In this paper, we focus on seven key themes relating to equality that emerged from an ethnography conducted during the workshop, including location, cultural and classroom hierarchies, gender, “girl games”, stakeholders and boundaries, and riskmitigation.


equality culture gender participatory design agile methodologies game design 


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© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rilla Khaled
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Computer Games ResearchIT University of CopenhagenCopenhagenDenmark

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