Chief Executive Andy Duncan has recently announced that Channel 4 will be the lead broadcast partner of Dare to Be Digital - an "interactive games and digital design competition" based out of the UK.
Dare to be Digital, organised by the University of Abertay Dundee, is a game competition for students at universities and colleges of art. Teams of five, usually a mix of artists and programmers, assemble in a regional hosting centre for ten weeks to develop a prototype game, receiving daily support and weekly training sessions from industry specialists.
At the end of the competition, the prototypes are displayed at a three-day showcasing event, Dare Protoplay, during the Edinburgh Festival in August. At this event the general public and industry experts play and assess the games. This is followed by an awards ceremony in Dundee for the winning teams.
With the cash support from Channel 4, the Dare to be Digital initiative will be further expanded, selecting Wales as a priority regional focus for next year's competition. A selection committee will be in place in Cardiff by February 2008 to identify the teams who should go forward to benefit from the comprehensive package of support available.
Channel 4 already supports the initiative through its 4Talent portal, which supports young people trying to break into or further their careers in the creative industries. The Channel's 4Talent web site features regular updates from the Dare teams across the UK.
As part of the broadcaster's new package of assistance, it will also provide executive production support for the annual Dare film that will tour the UK after the Dare awards. The film will promote innovation and creativity in interactive entertainment and be used to promote the growth of further regional centres.
For more information about the game competition, visit the Dare to Be Digital web site