Civ 6 players are cut out to do well in business management, or so a study from the Review of Managerial Science says. The study, Good Gamers, Good Managers? A Proof-of-Concept Study with Sid Meier’s Civilization, was published in the Review in 2020, but since most of us don’t spend our disposable income on JSTOR subscriptions, parts of it are making the rounds on Reddit now. Here’s the gist of the study (without having to buy a sub).
Researchers picked existing human resources practices as their starting point. HR professionals routinely use gamification to test and train skills, they said, so the researchers wanted to apply that approach to an actual game. They had a few dozen business students play Civilization – though the abstract doesn’t specify how many iterations of the long-running series were used – and take a series of assessments to measure certain skillsets, including problem solving and general management.
The Civ players all scored higher on these assessments than the non-Civ players. The researchers also said preliminary surveys of in-game data including chat messages could point to other uses for video games in the workplace, namely gaining an idea of people’s personalities and communication styles. This relates primarily to strategy games, and the team didn’t recommend broader studies into different genres for similar purposes.
So there you have it. Directing Mahatma Gandhi to destroy the world with nuclear weapons, declaring war on the British Empire, and creating the most outrageous religions is actually part of your career development. Maybe hold off on the trash talk in the chat, though, at least when your potential employer might be watching.
Check out the abstract on Reddit to see for yourself.
If you’re keen to branch out from Civilization, check out our recommendations for the best strategy games on PC available now. And since everyone needs a mental and financial break from time to time, have a look at the best free PC games while you’re at it.