Digital Games Research
ECREA Section
Who’s who

Marko Siitonen – Chair

My background is in interpersonal communication, more specifically technology-mediated communication. I received my PhD in 2007 from the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. In my doctoral research I looked into the dynamics of social interaction in online multiplayer communities. Currently I am working as an associate professor of intercultural and digital communication at the Department of Language and Communication Studies, University of Jyväskylä. I am also involved in the Centre of Excellence in Game Culture Studies in Finland, a multi-year, multi-site collaboration with the universities of Tampere and Turku that will go on until mid 2020s. My current research interests include the use of simulations and games for “serious” applications such as mental health care and communication instruction, as well as the communicative construction of player communities. I have a long history of attending both communication sciences and game studies conferences, and a good grasp of the field as a whole.

Felix Reer

I studied media psychology at the University of Cologne and graduated with a thesis on the enjoyment of playing computer and video games. After graduation, I started working as a research associate at the University of Tübingen. I received my PhD from the University of Duisburg-Essen, conducting empirical studies on psychosocial effects of using online games. Since 2016 I have been working as a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Communication in Münster where I am responsible for the VR and Game Lab. My current research interests in the field of digital games cover positive as well as negative consequences of gaming. For example, I am interested in the question whether playing computer and video games can contribute to the satisfaction of social and psychological needs and how gaming is related to well-being and mental health. Further, I am involved in research projects on the excessive use of games and its causes and consequences. Another focus of my current work lies in investigating how immersive media technologies (VR, AR) influence the gaming experience and the outcomes of playing.

Teresa de la Hera – Vice-chair

I started my academic career at the University of Santiago de Compostela in Spain in 2006 where I focused my research interests in the fields of new media and serious games. Later on, in 2011, I moved to the Netherlands where I received my PhD from Utrecht University, conducting qualitative research on the use of digital games for the communication of advertising messages. Between 2013 and 2017, I was a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at the Department of Media and Culture Studies at Utrecht University. As a postdoctoral researcher, I was a member of the NWO funded research project “Persuasive Gaming in Context” (www.persuasivegaming.nlOpent extern) in which I explored the potential of digital games as media for persuasion. Currently I am working as lecturer at the Department of Media & Communication at Erasmus University Rotterdam, in The Netherlands, where I teach in the International Bachelor’s programme in Communication and Media as well as in the international MA Media and Business. My research interests in the field of digital games include the use of digital games for social inclusion of minority groups and for communication and advertising.