World Climate Game: high school students took on the role of governments, companies and civil society groups to save the environment

There was an inspiring and motivating atmosphere within the premises of the United Nations Information Service (UNIS) Vienna when high school students from the HTL Spengergasse, a school for higher technical education, came to the UN in Vienna to play an interactive board game called “World Climate Game”. While playing the participants had the unique opportunity to understand the global consequences of climate change and explore various courses of action at different levels.

VIENNA, 25 April 2024 – Through the interactive World Climate Game developed by the Austrian Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Weitblick GmbH, the students stepped into the shoes of governments, companies, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), to make decisions that influence our climate. The game fosters the understanding of complex contexts and critical thinking – skills much needed for the future of our planet and the environment.

Matthias Mittelberger and Jerome Groger, the game hosts and developers, said that it is a helpful tool for children to be able to comprehend the climate crisis, its consequences, potential solutions, and the various actors involved. They highlighted the inter-connectivity element of the game: “At the beginning the students think they are playing against each other but then they realize that to find solutions they have to play with each other. So, a transformation from egoism to altruism, from competition to cooperation takes place.”


The World Climate Game gave the students a unique opportunity to become more aware of the pressing environmental issues of our time. At the end of the three-day simulation game the goal of achieving net zero emissions was reached and the students were proud of the group’s achievement. One student said he gained some significant insights from the game: “It became clear that we should not underestimate what can be done if all actors cooperate.  With a unified approach it is possible to stop climate change.”

Forty-five years ago, the Vienna International Centre – widely known as the “UNO-City” (UN City) was established. In marking this anniversary in 2024, there is an aim to place special emphasis on how we can collectively shape a better future. Martin Nesirky, Director of the United Nations Information Service (UNIS), Vienna, mentioned the huge relevance of the participation and motivation of young people in this context.

The World Climate Game is a great initiative for raising awareness in shaping a better future - thank you to everyone who participated.