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Pounamu: Play today and shape our future

Pounamu: Play today and shape our future

Date: August 29 12.00pm – August 30 12.00pm
Location: Anywhere with an internet connection
Issued by: The MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology and StratEDGY Strategic Foresight

Today sees New Zealanders around the country, and around the world, logging in from their homes, schools, workplaces and public playing hubs to help shape the future by playing Pounamu.

Pounamu is a free, browser-based, online game, set in a future world where EVERYONE in New Zealand understands, and has access to science. Players come together to have conversations about what they would do in that world. As a country, we have some big choices to make and Pounamu offers the ability to explore hundreds of paths forward. People can play for ve minutes and share one idea, or play for the whole game and climb up the leaderboard.

Players can join in and contribute to the conversation at any time throughout the day or night. The game runs for 24 hours from midday Thursday 29 August New Zealand Standard Time.

Pounamu asks New Zealanders to consider the questions:
With the new tools generated by science and technology, imagine the possibilities! How do we treasure and build on what we have—our land, people, knowledge and connections—to create prosperity, good health, sustainability, resilience and accessibility for all New Zealanders?

What will you create? Who will you work with? What will you invest in? What problems will you solve? What will you change?

As well as the opportunity to play Pounamu online, there are ‘hubs’ scattered around the country where players who want to play in teams, or don’t have access to the Internet, or just want to play in a social environment, have the opportunity to do so. These public spaces include Te Papa in Wellington, selected branches of Auckland libraries , The Gap Filler ’Pallet Pavilion’ café in Christchurch and Otago Museum in Dunedin.

Te Papa also plays host to Hard Science, Serious Fun a live, interactive experience tonight from 7pm-8.30pm. Scientists from different disciplines will share stories of the capacities their science give us today, and the capacities they are likely to give us in 2023. Players are invited to help build micro-forecasts about how we might use those capacities – to make a living, protect the environment, live healthily, have fun, and create art.

Visit to register to play, watch the game video, create a profile and find more information about The World of Pounamu.

Pounamu is the brainchild of The MacDiarmid Institute’s Professor Shaun Hendy and Dr Stephanie Pride of StratEDGY Strategic Foresight. The game is run with the support of The Institute for the Future on their ‘Foresight Engine’.

Funding to support the running of Pounamu comes from the Prime Minister’s Science Media Communication Prize, The MacDiarmid Institute, Allan Wilson Centre, Gravida, Maurice Wilkins Centre, Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, Riddet Institute and The Bio-Protection Research Centre.


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