On 20th February 2016, World Factory ran a workshop for current AHRC-funded (Arts and Humanities Research Council) PhD students at Cambridge University. Each group played the game in a custom-designed space, adapted for a smaller number of participants, while keeping the flavour and experience of the full show. The group members knew different amounts about the issues raised by World Factory – some were working on labour laws and the global garment trade, but others worked in disciplines such as literature or history.
Afterwards, there was plenty of time for everyone to discuss how they had found the experience, and what they had got from it. People commented on the ‘incredibly stimulating’ atmosphere and the ‘very engaging and fun’ format, while others saw it as a ‘good opportunity to learn about agency and structure in the global economy.’
When thinking about what World Factory had led them to consider, one participant had gained perspective on their daily choices, saying: ‘Sometimes we make important decisions without realising how important they are.’ For another, their reflection was wider, saying that ‘as a human being this is a very welcome wake-up call regarding our world’.