Grassroots Esports debate
MOVE Congress Debate
Friday 17 November 2023: 9.45-11.15 CET
Room: Zaragoza (4th floor)
Moderator: Sjaak Kuil, H20 Esports and Go!Gaming, the Netherlands
Panellists: Matthijs Vink, H20 Esports and Go!Gaming; Viktória Anna Kovács, Hungarian Country Office of the World Health Organization (WHO); Mads Arnborg Didriksen, Esports consultant at DGI, Denmark; Patrik Katona External Expert at the Hungarian Esports Federation (HUNESZ).
Esports are often perceived as individualised and home-based activities, whether this involves the individual player or spectator of elite esports. In between these two images lies a thriving grassroots esports culture, where many children and young people are engaged in activities organised by stakeholders spanning from their local schools, online communities and sports clubs.
As a growing recreational activity that is often perceived as sedentary and isolated, esports conjures a lot of curiosity and poses critical questions about health and wellbeing that we will aim to bring out in this open debate.
The Grassroots Esports concept aims at enhancing awareness of the individual and social benefits of responsible, value-based esports. Five panellists representing esports and health will join the debate to initiate an exchange on the key benefits and challenges of grassroots esports.
The panellists represent diverse opinions and with that the sessions aims to look at grassroots esports from several angles and potentially bust some common myths. The discussion will focus on topics like the structure of esports clubs versus traditional sports clubs, education, health, social and commercial aspects of esports. The experts come from different countries in Europe and will share their knowledge and experience from vastly different contexts.
We’ll encourage a lively debate that isn’t afraid to ask tough questions, like:
- Can grassroots esports be a value-based club sport?
- Can esports and physical activity be compatible? Can you organise esports in a way that is balanced by physical activity?
- If esports are linked to more screen time, sedentary behaviour and isolation, are they an enemy of public health? Can grassroots esports clubs turn this perception around?
ISCA coordinator of the session: Anita Király
This session is supported by a European Union grant as part of the European Grassroots Esports project debate and opinion piece series. https://esports.isca.org/