GDC 2023 is the industry's greatest source of content and connections—and is also committed to having a positive social and environmental impact on the game dev industry, the city of San Francisco, and the larger global community. Here's how.
For years, the GDC team has taken steps to make sure it's creating a safe space for all and supporting underrepresented voices in the industry through a variety of programs and partnerships. GDC is likewise committed to reducing the event's carbon footprint and bringing attention to climate change issues to produce a more sustainable event.
This year, we are proud of our commitment to having a positive environmental and social impact on the communities and industries we work within, and have taken the following steps to achieve these goals during this year's event.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
- Supporting Social Advocacy: Attendees can expect access to a diverse array of talks aimed at supporting aspiring game devs and highlighting broader issues of social advocacy in the game industry. These include Black Excellence in Game Development: The Designer's Dilemma, The History of Latinx Characters in Games, Your DEI Initiatives Are Making Your Culture Worse, and, for the first time, two Speed Networking sessions dedicated to supporting marginalized creators—happening on Wednesday, March 22 at 3:30pm and Friday, March 24 at 3:00pm. Head to our Session Viewer for more.
- Pronoun Tags and Gender-Neutral Bathrooms: GDC supports the flourishing diversity in our community, and do our best to create a space to reflect that. As such, when arriving to pick up event badges for GDC attendees will be given the option to pick up pronoun tags as well. In addition, gender-neutral bathrooms will be available during the conference, and their locations will be marked for attendees.
- Prayer Room: Attendees can access a Prayer Room with a quiet space for prayer onsite. The room location is South 305. The doors will be locked, but keys will be available to check out at the show office, South 105. If the room is being used a lot, we will proceed to leave the room open. Head here for hours.
- Lactation Spaces: Mamava nursing pods will be located on the Moscone South Lower Mezzanine next to Room 50. One of the pods is ADA-accessible. We also have (1) Mamava nursing pod on Level 2 of Moscone West by Room 2024. Head here to download the access app.
- Closed Captioning Accessibility Improvements: GDC provides closed captioning in multiple languages (English, Spanish, Mandarin, and Japanese) for many of our sessions available on-demand through GDC Vault.
- Purposeful Partnerships: As part of our commitment to the sustainable development of the game industry and its wider impact, each year we have over 20 partnerships with organizations like Girls Make Games, I Need Diverse Games, Game Devs of Color, and Gay Game Industry Professionals. These partners are helping to shape the future of the industry by providing opportunities to and amplifying the work of game developers from underrepresented communities.
- Indie Giving Hygiene Drive: GDC has partnered once again with Indie Giving for their Hygiene Drive, located in the South Hall throughout the week of GDC (and near the Main Stage during IGF Awards and GDCA). Attendees are asked to bring donations of unused hygiene products, which Compass Family Services puts together into care packages for families in need. More information can be found here.
- Renewable Energy Commitment: The Game Developers Conference is powered by renewable energy, which is a step towards attaining our goal of Net Zero. Energy efficient lighting and equipment will be used throughout the event.
- Complimentary Bike Valet: GDC has partnered with San Francisco Bike Coalition to provide a complimentary Bike Valet service for GDC attendees. It will be located at Paseo Alleyway off 3rd Street between Howard and Folsom.
- No Aisle Carpet: While the bulk of aisle carpet does get returned to inventory for reuse, it’s inevitable that some makes its way to landfill. Additionally, the carpet that is returned to inventory is professionally cleaned, usually with petroleum-based solutions, and emissions are exhausted from the trucks that transport the carpet to and from the warehouse to show site. As part of GDC's commitment to achieving a net zero carbon event, this move is one step in that direction.
- Digital Tote Bags and Guides: GDC has switched to digital event guides to reduce paper use. In addition, the contents of a normal GDC promotional tote bag have been recreated in an exclusively digital format for both in-person and virtual attendees.
- Climate Resilience Through Game Technologies Community Space: The Arsht-Rock Gaming Team is hosting a booth to connect game developers with life-saving interventions and resources, building community resilience to global climate change. On-site will be an innovative VR experience which allows participants to experience the impacts of climate change firsthand and take action to protect the world's most vulnerable communities. Additionally, developers will have the opportunity to connect with Arsht-Rock's Center of Excellence: The go-to center for learning how to leverage the power of play to build actionable skills and a deep understanding of the climate crisis. Find at: West Hall, Level 2.
- Supporting Climate Resilience: GDC 2023 is hosting a variety of talks about climate issues and sustainability, including Climate Games: The Developer's Field Guide and Playing for the Planet Climate Check: 10 Steps to Climate Leadership. Head to our Session Viewer for more.
- Climate Crisis Workshop: Following a successful debut at last year's event, the full-day Advocacy workshop Climate Crisis Workshop: Use Your Game Developer Superpowers to Fight The Climate Crisis returns on Monday, March 20 from 10:30am to 6:30pm, available for all pass holders.
These efforts are ongoing and evolving; we are committed to actively deepening our relationships and support. We hope you’ll join us in our goal of having a positive environmental and social impact on both the communities and industries we work within.
We can’t wait to see you at GDC 2023, taking place March 20-24, 2023 at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, California. Head here for information on booking a hotel and other travel inquiries, and follow the #GDC23 hashtag for the latest news and updates for this year’s exciting event.
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