Do Gaming Simulations Substantiate That We Know More Than We Can Tell?

M.A. van Haaften*, I. Lefter, H. Lukosch, O. van Kooten, F. Brazier

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background. Revealing tacit knowledge often is seen as very valuable for organizations, although it is usually challenging to enunciate and share this type of knowledge. Methods. This study uses a participatory design and the application of a board gaming simulation as instruments to extract tacit knowledge. To illustrate this application, the gaming simulation is played with entrepreneurs from horticulture. Horticulture represents a complex social system where tacit knowledge plays a major role in the trade process. A participatory design process is used to explore whether the design and play of gaming simulations enable participants to explicate their tacit knowledge. Participants’ participation in designing the gaming simulation explicated that reconstructing reality was a prerequisite for their commitment. Results. The results from playing simulation sessions show that participants were able to: (1) narrow down the anecdotic behaviour to a few factors; (2) to structure these factors; (3) explore how these factors relate to trade barriers and (4) to explain which tactics are applied to foster trade. Conclusion. The educational value of this study is that it helped entrepreneurs in understanding complex real-life situations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)478-500
JournalSimulation and Gaming
Issue number4
Early online date6 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021


  • gaming simulation
  • information asymmetry
  • participatory design
  • strategic behaviour
  • tacit knowledge
  • uncertain forecast production


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