Organizers of the Game Developers Conference Europe have announced the event's return to Cologne, Germany in 2010 alongside Gamescom, combining to present the leading European game industry event for developers, consumers, publishers, and trade professionals.
In 2009, GDC Europe -- part of the UBM TechWeb Game Network, as is Gamasutra -- hosted over 130 international speakers, 40 exhibitors and sponsors from 35 countries, 240 media representatives and around 1,500 participants - advancing to become the leading conference for computer and video game developers in Europe.
"Of course, we intend to claim this leading role again this year," said Frank Sliwka, Vice President European Business Development and Event Director GDC Europe.
"GDC Europe plans to offer attendees and participants outstanding new opportunities to learn and network. This includes three major updates that will be added to the regular program featuring keynotes, lectures, roundtables & workshops and exhibition area."
The show producers have expanded GDC Europe's exhibition opportunities to include both last year's exhibit areas and a major new space within the gamescom Business Area, which will grant GDC Europe exhibitors additional meeting room space during the overlapping gamescom event.
This new area - named the GDC Europe Business Lounge at gamescom -- will also host a VIP lounge area for GDC Europe Plus members to convene and conduct business.
With German and European companies moving strongly to dominate the online and browser game space, GDC Europe plans to focus the second day of the event, August 17 to covering browser-based, social network and online games, and key emerging markets.
Additionally, GDC Europe plans to provide a major platform for "online games companies" to host press conferences at GDC Europe on this day. "Given the international network of the Game Developers Conferences and the UBM TechWeb Game Network, a resounding response is guaranteed for these new conference offerings," explains Frank Sliwka.
In related news, in March 2010, the UBM TechWeb Game Network will launch a new project called the "Academic Exchange Program," in cooperation with the North Rhine-Westphalian state chancellery. It's intended to promote the academic exchange between universities with game degree programs from North Rhine Westphalia (NRW) and America.
As part of this event, university professors from NRW and their American colleagues will participate at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, and exchange information on current teaching programs and best practices.
"The games industry will only thrive with qualified labor. Thus, an international program to exchange current training methods on an academic level is very desirable, since the shared knowledge on technical and design aspects of today's video games are of crucial importance for today's industry," Frank Sliwka explains regarding the philosophy of the project.
Interested parties can find further info on this year's GDC Europe event at its official website