The London Games Summit, presented by TIGA and ELSPA, commenced this morning in central London with a brief speech given by Lord Sainsbury of Turville, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Science and Innovation.
Lord Sainsbury, whose position falls under the Department of Trade and Industry, stresses that government is working strongly with the game industry in the U.K. to create the “best possible conditions in this country for your industry to innovate and grow.”
He noted the financial strength of the game industry in Europe and U.K., noting its worth now surpasses that of the film industry. “The computer games industry is economically much more important (than film),” he says. “It is the innovation and creativity that has allowed this sector to grow,” he says.
The Minister of Science and Innovation also understands that challenges exist in the industry, but feels confident that the technology and brainpower driving the game industry will surely overcome them. Among such challenges, he names the high cost of developing for next-gen consoles, talent needed to develop dynamic and appealing games, and the negative attention that regulators in the U.S. draw to games.
Lord Sainsbury mentions that one way to create “new wealth” in Great Britain is through science and innovation, including that which can occur in game development—and not only on the consumer side, but also in terms of enriching the lives of others through games, and enriching the education of future game developers.
The minister notes that one goal of his department is to ensure that all young people have the opportunity to acquire scientific and technical skills. Since video game development is a “glamorous” job for young people, he hopes they are further encouraged to study more hard (as opposed to soft) subjects, like physics, math, and sciences, “motivated by what they see as the exciting jobs of the future,” he says.
The London Games Summit continues today and tomorrow at BAFTA’s headquarters in London. Visit the official LGS website
for more information.