Asi Burak

Rate this item
(4 votes)
Asi Burak EventBrite.com
Read 2525 times

Asi Burak is the co-president of Games for Change, an organization created to mobilize social impact of digital games. Half the Sky Movement has recently partnered with them in creating “Half the Sky: The Game,” which is now creating a buzz. Before taking the helm of the non-profit organization, Asi has been a strategic advisor to organizations such as EON Productions (007), Newsweek and McCann Erickson for gaming and brand engagement. He is twice a finalist of INDEX International Design Award and a Tech Awards laureate. He founded ImpactGames in 2006 and developed PeaceMaker and Play the News (PtN).

Achievements

Why Asi Burak is Extraordinary

Asi Burak is the co-president of Games for Change and an award-winning game designer. He created PeaceMaker and Play the News as Chief Product Officer of ImpactGames. His ingenuity earned him the Best Transformation Game and the News Game Award. He is also a Tech Awards laureate aside from being a finalist twice in the International Design Award. Asi once worked as an independent Executive Producer for Newsweek Digital, McCann Erickson / MRM Worldwide, USAID, CURE International, Games for Change, E-Line Media. Known in the world of gaming, Asi Burak, is out to change the world’s perspective of video games.

Playing Video Games for Good

As co-president of Games for Change, Asi acts as its spokesperson. What he wants people to understand is that Games for Change is not a game developer company. It is rather a non-profit organization that aims to bring social workers and game designers together to create video games that have positive impact to society.

Games for Change has partnered with Half the Sky movement in developing a game that would increase awareness about the plight of women who suffer from abuse and have fallen prey to sex trafficking, among many other abuses. It also tackles poverty and other profound concepts about the real challenge the world is facing nowadays. You might ask, how can a video game that is supposed to entertain be riddled with complex issues? What Asi envisioned is to use video games as a tool to depict reality and create a platform to simulate the challenges people are facing in war-torn countries. More than just playing for recreation, the gamers get to take a peek into a world they are most likely unaware of.

Using Facebook for Nick Kristof’s Movement

Half the Sky movement came about after the success of Nick Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s book, “Half the Sky.” Nick approached Games for Change to ask if they could help them create a video game in the hope of reaching more people. There was no funding given but Asi was more than willing to help the organization in gaining more popularity to further promote their cause. It commenced the three-year creation of what would be called “Half the Sky: The Game.”

In order to tap more potential users, they used Facebook and they partnered with Zynga.com, a well-known game developer in Facebook founded by Mark Pincus. The funding was provided by the US National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). It was a long journey but it was worth the effort because they are receiving feedback from people all over the world, saying that the game opened their eyes to the plight of marginalized women.

A Sought-After Speaker

Due to Asi’s revolutionary take on video games, he gets invited to speak by respected institutions such as TEDTalks, Harvard Kennedy School, Sundance, the Skoll World Forum, CES, SXSW, GDC, and the US Army War College. Asi completed his master's in Entertainment Technology from Carnegie Mellon University where he conceptualized the game, PeaceMaker. He founded his own company ImpactGames right after graduating from Carnegie Mellon University. His work was acknowledged for “Reinventing Public Diplomacy through Games” and won the Best Transformation Game. He was nominated for the Charles Bronfman Prize and made it to the finals of the Entrepreneuring Peace Contest and the Serious Games Showcase and Challenge. Named one of the “Digital 25: Leaders in Emerging Entertainment” by the Producers Guild of America (PGA) and Variety Magazine, Asi stays faithful to his duty as Game for Change’s co-president.

With Michelle Byrd, Asi hopes not to only alleviate social issues but to also change how the world sees video games. What keeps his hopes up is:

"In the early years, a lot of work was needed to convince funders, government, stakeholders, and others that games are a viable thing. Now they’re convinced. Many organizations are putting a lot of effort and resources into this area. So now it’s more about sustainability and scalability. In the past, there were a lot of one-time projects. Now we need more projects that are sustainable." (Source: Spotlight On)

Top Reasons why Asi Burak is Extraordinary

  1. He works with Half the Sky movement and helps increase social awareness through Half the Sky: The Game.
  2. He is currently the co-president of Games for Change, a non-government organization that aims to use video games to create positive influence.
  3. He is a respected figure in the world of gaming for creating award-winning games: PeaceMaker and Play the News.
  4. He founded ImpactGames in 2006 after he completed his masters in Entertainment Technology from Carnegie Mellon University.
  5. He used to serve as Captain in Israeli Defense Forces.
  6. He won the Best Transformation Game and was acknowledged for “Reinventing Public Diplomacy through Games.”
  7. Before founding ImpactGames, he worked at Saatchi & Saatchi as Senior Art Director.
  8. He was once AxisMobile's Marketing and Product Department vice president.
  9. He used to be an independent Executive Producer for Newsweek Digital, McCann Erickson / MRM Worldwide, USAID, CURE International, Games for Change, E-Line Media.
  10. He is a Tech Awards laureate and has won the News Game Award aside from being nominated for the Charles Bronfman Prize.

© Copyright 2012 - 2017 Peter Horsfield. All Rights Reserved.
Sitemap | Privacy Policy | Copyright Notice
Web Marketing and Production CreativeWeb.Marketing