2022W1: Exploring Gaming Education in the Military for Cultural Heritage Protection- A HRC & DCOE-PS Research Engagementship (Cohort 3)


This co-curricular opportunity is a collaboration between the UBC Human Rights Collective (HRC), Dallaire Centre of Excellence for Peace and Security (DCOE-PS), and the UBC Office of Regional and International Community Engagement (ORICE). Students will engage in research and analysis to advance the understanding of the role of gaming in cultural heritage protection. Through a literature review of educational gaming approaches and key informant interviews, students will explore how cultural heritage protection games could be used to inform the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and engage youth in peace and security processes. Student research will be of use to the DCOE-PS, the HRC, and other organizations which work on the protection of cultural heritage sites. This project will meet at the intersection of military game development and human rights and how the two intersect with cultural property protection in the domestic sphere. 

This is a multistage project with various cohorts that build on each other’s work. The final goal of the project is to situate the concept of Cultural Property Protection (CPP) within a Canadian context, informed by Canadian obligations as a member of the UN and NATO and as a party to numerous international laws and agreements. Another overarching goal is to build relationships among students, HRC/ORICE staff, and DCOE-PS staff. This project would allow students to gain insight into government processes, networks, and obtain research experience with potential chances for funded cultural heritage site visits. It would provide students with an immersive and interdisciplinary understanding of an issue and a particular stakeholder approach. 

Focus areas: cultural preservation; cultural property protection; military/academic relations; youth participation in peace and security processes; educational game development; civilian-military relations; domestic operations; cultural property protection and academic freedom 

Purpose/Output: Awareness-raising exercise amongst military members and decision-makers

Research questions

  1. What teaching methodologies exist for human security concepts? 
  2. Which populations are served (or not) by existing methodologies? 
  3. How could a cultural property protection education serve the professional military education (PME) needs of the CAF?
  4. How can educational/military gaming be used as a conflict resolution tool?

Note: These research questions may change as the project progresses. 


  • Final report including 
    • A literature review of educational theories of gaming, with attention to:
      • Constructivist and progressivist approaches 
      • The role of military gaming in the CAF 
      • Relationship between gaming and youth participation 
      • Skills and knowledge related to cultural heritage protection in peace and security processes
      • Identification of community-based organizations working on educational game development, and more specifically, how a cultural heritage protection game could be conceptualized
      • Final presentation/awareness exercise to the Canadian government and non-governmental representatives where appropriate

Project dates: Week of January 16th to April 24th, 2023

What to expect:

Over 12 weeks from January to April 2023, teams of 4-8 students will spend 3-5 hours each week working collaboratively towards completing the report and presentation. Students will be asked to participate in weekly scheduled calls or meetings to ensure collaboration and accountability goals are defined and met. However, much of the allotted time will be self-directed as per agreements with teammates. Where possible, these sessions will be embedded in weekly calls or meetings though some may fall outside of regularly scheduled times.  Depending on COVID & Public Health restrictions and accessibility requirements of the team, some meetings may also occur in person or take an online/hybrid format.

UBC HRC’s Mission Statement

The Human Rights Collective is a welcoming community collective for scholars, including students and faculty at all academic levels, communities, organizations, and institutions across disciplines committed to examining, collaborating, and acting towards the advancement of human rights. 

Building upon a foundational understanding of the role that academic freedom plays in the work that we engage in as a collective, we commit to holding an accessible, critical, caring, and reflexive space of engagement. Our work acknowledges power and positionality, and we act in solidarity regarding human rights abuses.

The collective aim is to develop, support, and secure resources for a community of praxis of engaged scholars. Scholars who lead and participate in teaching and learning, research, solidarity, and community-engaged action toward advancing global human rights. We support faculty in teaching initiatives and through partnerships with local and international organizations working in the field of human rights within our network.

To learn more about us, visit https://humanrightscollective.ubc.ca/about/ 

Dallaire Centre of Excellence Mission

DCOE enhances CAF’s capabilities to deal with complex peace and security issues through research and professional-based analysis, expertise, and best practices to contribute to policy and concept development, doctrine, military training, and education. 

The Centre supports the enhancement of CAF effectiveness by serving as an enduring platform for preventing the recruitment and use of child soldiers and subsequently expanding to focus on issues in the human security domain within the Defence mandate. 

Academic integration:

Please note this is a not-for-credit, unpaid research opportunity. If you are interested in making this a student-directed study course, please contact ubc.orice@ubc.ca to discuss the possibility of this option.


  • Be an undergraduate student (domestic or international) at UBC with 60 or more completed credits.
  • Undergraduate students not meeting 60 credits, as well as graduate students, can apply, but preference will be given to undergraduate students with 60+ credits.
  • Have access to a reliable internet connection and computer to collaborate with peers and attend meetings remotely if online meetings are required.
  • Demonstrate the ability to think critically and creatively and be willing to take responsibility and initiative to meet project deliverables.
  • Prior knowledge about cultural heritage / cultural spaces / human security / human rights/ relevant legal and regulatory frameworks to date is an asset but not necessary
  • Able to work within Pacific Time Zone (PST) in cases where virtual meetings are required.

Anti-Racism and Ethics of Engagement:

The UBC HRC and the Office for Regional and International Community Engagement (UBC ORICE) are committed to embedding anti-racism in our daily work and ongoing projects. Students are encouraged and expected to consider how they can take an anti-racist lens to work they produce around citizen science, data collection and use, and connections between community-based organizations, academics, and government. This might include, but is not limited to, ensuring the incorporation of the ongoing and often unrecognized work of organizations advocating for justice for minorities, particularly during the pandemic; or engaging with the politics of citation in including and citing the work of non-white scholars and other researchers. 


  • Deadline: 11:59 PM PST on Sunday, January 15th, 2023
  • Short interviews by: the week of January 9th
  • Project dates: Week of January 16th to April 24th

How to apply

Thank you for your interest. The recruitment for this program has now closed.

Please reach out to us at ubc.hrc@ubc.ca if you have any questions.

The Human Rights Collective acknowledges that we organize, research, and learn on unceded traditional  xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) territory.