United Nations uses Minecraft to change the world

Mojang has teamed up with the United Nations on Block by Block, a Minecraft-based initiative. The project sees gamers invited into servers and asked to modify certain real-world locations – and these designs and feedback are then passed on to planners and decision makers.

Block by Block

Changing the world, one block at a time.

Mojang‘s Carl Manneh explains:

Minecraft has turned out to be the perfect tool to facilitate this process. The three-year partnership will support UN-Habitat’s Sustainable Urban Development Network to upgrade 300 public spaces by 2016.

The Minecraft developer is now the primary financial sponsor for Block by Block, working closely with the UN and other industry bodies to help reach the project’s goals.

The first pilot project is an informal settlement in Nairobi, named Kibera. It’s already in the planning stages, with “epic” Minecraft builder group FyreUK working on translating the village into an in-game map.

Block by Block - Undugu Playground

Pilot project: Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya

Expect a new Block by Block website in the near future, with plenty of updates as the project continues. It’s worth noting at this point too – the original idea came from the United Nations, who approached Mojang asking for involvement, suggesting the Minecraft influence might be reaching a little further than we realised.

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