Africulture is a simulation game in which participants take on the role of African male and female farmers and children. The fulfilment of tasks and responsibilities that are linked to the role, e.g. the achievement of sufficient nutrition, the earning of cash are conditioned by factors like family composition, crop hazards, prices of commodities and urban job opportunities.
At the beginning of the game the participants, in their respective roles, form different farm households. The game simulates a period of two to three agricultural seasons or years, in a farming system with both food crops and cash crops. The family has to allocate land, labour and inputs to agricultural production, which is likely to be affected by risks such as pests and dry spells. Aside from agricultural production, there are domestic activities that need to be carried out by a woman (water collection, food preparation and baby minding). And there is a town nearby to which men, women and children can go for different cash earning jobs, and where they can have some fun. Children can go to school, participants grow older over time and, if no precaution is made, new babies can be born. After the harvest, crops can be bought, sold or stored and nutritional requirements should be met. The outcomes of the simulation are strongly influenced by the decisions the farmers themselves take. The production or availability of food determines the nutritional and health status of the family members and is therefore closely related to risks related to illness or death.
As a participant farmer you have several options to make life a little easier; you can buy an input package, a store, a stove, a bicycle, medical treatment, school certificates, bus tickets or lodging in town. However, everything has its price!
By playing the game, you experience many of the concepts that have been discussed in class: Input and output markets and prices, urban and rural Labour markets, migration and transaction costs, division of labour, education and health and risks and uncertainty.
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