Problem: Marginalization of some demographic groups in the political discourse of Sudan.
Solution: An online dialogue platform that provides a forum for virtual civic engagement through a gamified dialogue process.
Goals and objectives: To promote peaceful civic engagement on the future of Sudan.
Implementation: In recognition of the importance of effective citizen engagement and participation, the Joint Conflict Reduction Programme (JCRP)/UNDP Sudan in collaboration with a private game developing company, Serious Games Interactive developed an online gamified dialogue platform – Raik Shino (“What do you think”) - which enables the Sudanese youth to creatively interact and discuss the future of Sudan.
The idea behind the gamified platform is to provide opportunities for people to creatively interact and discuss the future of Sudan and encourage citizen engagement in the political dialogue. The process is gamified through a point-based competition and by incentivising participants through leader boards and prizes. Although it is a public platform to openly discuss and reflect, it is a closed online environment where login and game profile names are required to participate in the discussion and have anonymity features to foster a safe space for discussion.
Raik Shino was developed following a UNDP sponsored workshop with participants including peace ambassadors, academics from peace institutes across Sudan and members of the private sector interested in innovation for peacebuilding in Sudan. Participants were tasked with testing and refining ideas related to the development of a civic engagement tool using a human-centred design approach. For many this was their first encounter with human-centred design thinking and the day presented an altogether innovative way of working which required active participation and critical thinking by all participants at every stage. The workshop also reviewed and informed the framework of “Raik Shino” and created a group of prototyping champions to support the testing and implementation of the platform in various parts of Sudan.
In 2016, Raik Shino expanded its partnerships and hosted campaigns in collaboration with UNICEF, Ahfad University and the game company Lamsat Najeh. Three campaigns were launched on Raik Shino around Handwashing Day (with UNICEF); International Day of Peace (with Afhad University); and Abandonment of FGM/C in Sudan (with UNICEF). Furthermore, the platform was also used to explore initiatives on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH). The successful partnerships showed the potential of Raik Shino as an interagency tool that can be used to crowdsource ideas across Sudan for UN organisations based in that country.
Its offline scaling activity has expanded to include innovative soft skills training such as design thinking to crowdsource ideas from and engage citizen youths in Darfur. The young citizens designed 100 solutions to address peacebuilding, women’s empowerment, and vocation-based livelihoods training opportunities in Darfur.
Achievements: Raik Shino was among four winning proposals for the cross-regional UNDP Technology for Citizen Engagement Challenge. By its first year of inception, the online game platform subscribers increased to more than 2,000 from 800 in 2015.
The Raik Shino platform, although successful, concluded in 2018 – the lessons learnt have been applied to new experiments.
Contact details: Ali Muntasir Eltayeb Ibrahim, Head of Experimentation, UNDP Sudan