Integrating Geodesign and game experiments for negotiating urban development


  • Sander Lenferink Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Gustavo Arciniegas Mapsup. Digital Process Support
  • Ary Samsura Radboud University Nijmegen
  • Linda Carton Radboud University Nijmegen




In this article we explore an expansion of geodesign to analyze processes of competition and cooperation by combining it with game-theoretical modelling and experiments. We test the applicability of facilitating these two fields in an integrated workshop by analysing the case study of oversupply of development sites in the Liemers corridor. Two workshops were held, with representatives of the six municipalities involved and with the regional and provincial authority, in which participants negotiated over the distribution of the supply of development sites. The workshops were performed around an interactive MapTable, with spatial information (from GIS) and financial information (from the game-theoretical model) being visualized in real-time. The integrated workshops were assessed to discover differences in terms of process and outcomes, and they examine whether and how learning takes place. We conclude that the combination of game theory and geodesign provides added value for planning support by facilitating a realistic discussion, and negotiation that is strongly connected to real-life locations, and by aiming at designing a common, collaborative solution. Through the integrated workshop learning about the problem of oversupply in financial and geographical terms and also about each other’s motives and behaviour is stimulated.

How to Cite

Lenferink, S., Arciniegas, G., Samsura, A., & Carton, L. (2016). Integrating Geodesign and game experiments for negotiating urban development. Research in Urbanism Series, 4, 70–92.




Arciniegas López, G. A. (2012). Map-based decision support tools for collaborative land use planning (PhD thesis). VU University, Amsterdam. Retrieved from

Arciniegas López, G. A., & Janssen, R. (2012). Spatial decision support for collaborative land use planning workshops. Landscape and Urban Planning, 107(3), 332-342.

Aumann, R. J. (1985). What is game theory trying to accomplish? In: K. J. Arrow, & S. Honkapohja, (Eds.), Frontiers of Economics. Oxford, United Kingdom: Basil Blackwell.

Bochet et al., 2006

Carton, L. J. (2007). Map making and map use in a multi-actor context. Spatial visualizations and frame conflicts in regional policymaking in the Netherlands (PhD thesis). Delft, University of Technology. Available online at

Carton, L. J., & Thissen, W. A. H. (2009). Emerging conflict in collaborative mapping: towards a deeper understanding? Journal of Environmental Management, 90(6), 1991-2001.

CBS, PBL and Wageningen UR (2013) Compendium voor de Leefomgeving. Retrieved from

Cobouw (2013) Bouwkosten – Kosteninformatie. Retrieved from

Cope, M., & Elwood, S. (Eds.). (2009). Qualitative GIS: A Mixed Methods Approach. London, United Kingdom: Sage.

Crampton, J. W., & Krygier, J. (2006). An Introduction to Critical Cartography. ACME: An International E-Journal for Critical Geographies, 4(1), 11-33. Retrieved from

D'Aquino, P., Le Page, C., Bousquet, F., & Bah, A. (2003). Using Self-Designed Role-Playing Games and a Multi-Agent System to Empower a Local Decision-Making Process for Land Use Management: The SelfCormas Experiment in Senegal. Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, 6(3). Available from

Dixit & Skeath, 2004

EIB, Economisch Instituut voor de Bouw (2013). Verkenning woningbouwprogrammering regio Arnhem-Nijmegen. Retrieved from

Elster, J. (1982). Marxism, functionalism and game theory. The case for methodological individualism. Theory and Society, 11(4), 453-482.

Fehr, E., & Gächter, S. (2000). Cooperation and Punishment in Public Goods Experiments, American Economic Review, 90(4), 980-994.

Geertman, S., Stillwell, J., & Toppen, F. (Eds). (2013) Planning Support Systems for sustainable urban development. Heidelberg, Germany: Springer.

Goodchild, M. F. (2010). Towards Geodesign: Repurposing Cartography and GIS? Cartographic Perspectives, (66), 7-22.

Hardin, G. (1968). Tragedy of the commons. Science, 13 December 1968, 1243-1248.

Hardin, R. (1971). Collective Action as an Agreeable n-Prisoners' Dilemma. Behavioral Science, 16(5), 472-481.

Henrich, J., Heine, S. J., Norenzayan, A. (2010). The weirdest people in the world? Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 33(2-3), 61-135.

IBIS-Province of Gelderland (2013). Voorraadgegevens bedrijventerreinen Gelderland per 1-1-2013. Available online at

Lee, D. B. (1994). Retrospective on large-scale urban models, Journal of the American Planning Association, 60(1), 35-40.

Mayer, I.S., Carton, L. J., De Jong, M., Leijten, M., & Dammers, E. (2004) Gaming the future of an urban network. Futures, 36(3), 311-333.

Myerson, R. B. (1991). Game Theory: Analysis of Conflict. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Neale, M. A, & Bazerman, M. H. (1985). The effects of framing and negotiator overconfidence on bargaining behaviors and outcomes. Academy of Management Journal, 28(1), 34-49.

Ostrom, E. (1990). Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.

Pelzer, P., Geertman, S, Van der Heijden, R., & Rouwette, E. (2014) The added value of Planning Support Systems: A practitioner’s perspective. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 48, 16-27.

Pelzer, P., & Geertman, S. (2014) Planning support systems and interdisciplinary learning. Planning Theory and Practice, 15(4), 527-542. doi: 10.1080/14649357.2014.963653

Province of Gelderland (2013) Omgevingsvisie Gelderland. Retrieved from

Rubin, J., & Brown, B. (1975). The social psychology of bargaining and negotiation. New York, NY: Academic Press.

Samsura, D.A. (2014). Games and the city (Doctoral Thesis). Radboud University, Nijmegen.

Schoepfer, I., & Rogers, S. (2014). A New Qualitative GIS Method for Investigating Neighbourhood Characteristics Using a Tablet. Cartographica: The International Journal for Geographic Information and Geovisualization, 49(2), 127-143.

Schoop, M. (2004, June). The Worlds of Negotiation. In Proceedings of the 9th International Working Conference on the Language-Action Perspective on Communication Modelling (LAP 2004), (pp. 179-196).

Steinitz, C. (2012). A Framework for Geodesign: Changing Geography by Design. Redlands, CA: ESRI Press.

Te Brömmelstroet, M. (2012). Transparency, flexibility, simplicity: From buzzwords to strategies for real PSS improvement. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 36(1), 96-104.

Vasconcelos, E., Lucena, C., Melo, G., Irving, M., Briot, J. P., Sebba, V., & Sordoni, A. (2009, October). A Serious Game for Exploring and Training in Participatory Management of National Parks for Biodiversity Conservation: Design and Experience. In Games and Digital Entertainment (SBGAMES), 2009 VIII Brazilian Symposium on (pp. 93-100). IEEE. Retrieved from

Vonk, G., Geertman, S., & Schot, P. (2005). Bottlenecks blocking widespread usage of planning support systems. Environment and Planning A, 37(5), 909-924.

VU University Amsterdam (2011). Land rents – determination of land rents for the Netherlands. Department of Spatial Economics & Spatial Information laboratory, Amsterdam.

Walker, D., & T. Daniels, T. L. (2011). The Planners Guide to CommunityViz: The Essential Tool for a New Generation of Planning. American Planning Association, APA Planners Press.