December 13, 2022

Empowering European Developers!

On Wednesday 7 December, EU40 – the Network of Young MEPs, and MEP Niklas Nienaß (Greens-DE), hosted an event titled, ‘Empowering European developers: Fostering the EU’s Video Games Ecosystem’.

This highly topical in-person discussion, which took place at the Microsoft Centre, Brussels, helped to facilitate a multi-stakeholder dialogue between representatives of the European Parliament, the Commission, and industry experts. By bringing together video games developers and key policymakers, the overall objective of the event was to explore in greater depth both the trends and opportunities in the European video games ecosystem.

Speakers discussed areas for further growth in the ecosystem, including the need to foster digital skills. Further talking points which were raised throughout the exchange included: the need for greater gender diversity across the European video games industry; the impact of the Digital Markets Act (DMA) and the Data Act; significant skills shortages; immigration issues (red tape making the employment of none-EU citizens problematic); taxation policy; partial market monopolization; European standardization; and video games as a cultural phenomenon.

Additionally, the initiative helped to promote the games of European developers by offering attendees the opportunity to play and experience the games themselves. During the networking cocktail, four games units were made available, allowing guests to compete amongst each other or simply to observe. Games included flight simulation and snowboarding among others. A special thank you to the Microsoft team who provided EU40 with both an impressive venue and high-tech entertainment facilities, which guests greatly enjoyed.

Guest Speakers included:
• Mr. Niklas Nienaß – German MEP (Greens) and member of ITRE, REGI and CULT
• Ms. Lucia Recalde Langarica – HoU (Audio-visual Industry and Media Support Programmes), DG CNECT
• Ms. Cornelia Kutterer – Senior Director (EU Government Affairs), Microsoft
• Mr. Jari-Pekka Kaleva – General Manager, European Games Developer Federation
• Mr. David Verbruggen – General Manager, Video Games Federation Belgium
• Mr. Dirk van Welden – Managing & Creative Director, I-Illusions & FoamPunch