Digital/Nature: (Re)-connecting children with the natural world through Minecraft

The project is a collaboration between Clinical Psychology, Sociology and Education. It builds on two core issues, children’s disconnect from nature and concerns about children’s engagement in the digital world. Through 'Digital Nature' we aim to explore how children’s digital worlds can be used to create a connection with nature.

Minecraft, a highly popular computer game offers a potential tool to engage children with nature digitally. Minecraft allows children to create a digital environment with geological features and populate it with flora and fauna. This project will engage children in creating Minecraft worlds as a view into their concepts of nature. It will also develop a technological connection between the child’s interaction with nature (watering a plant) and changes in their Minecraft worlds with the development of a bespoke Minecraft Mod.

Key contact: Jeremy Knox

Research areas
Digital Cultures
Research team

Jo Williams, Ken Macmahon (Clinical Psychology), Jeremy Knox (Education), Kate Orton-Johnson (Sociology)

Key contact
Dr Jeremy Knox

Stramash 'Transformations' funding competition, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of Edinburgh