Over the past five years, the University of York has established the largest university-based esports research group worldwide. The esports team at the University of York comprises 28 faculty members as well as full-time researchers, PhD students, analysts and developers across multiple university departments, with an overall anchoring in the Department of Theatre, Film, Television and Interaction Media, Department of Computer Science and the Department of Psychology. The esports research and development environment at the University of York is intrinsically inter-disciplinary, collaborating across domains to generate insights and innovations for esports and sports.

The rapidly growing research environment at the University of York brings together a diverse range of expertise and skills, from Interactive Storytelling and AI for Games to Machine Learning, Game Analytics, Data Literacy, UX Design, Data Visualisation, Learning Science and Cultural Studies. We take world-class expertise and take it in new, creative and unconventional directions. Our holistic approach to innovation in esports, combined with our drive for impact-driven research has attracted sustained collaborations with leading stakeholders in the esports industry. Our collaborations have generated research products that have been experienced by millions of people. We place great weight on teaching and learning, engaging with our students via projects and work-integrated modules.

We work closely with colleagues across industry and academia worldwide and are at any time engaged in more than a dozen collaborations. We are building new ways for fast-moving industry stakeholders and university scientists to collaborate and build value, with a focus on real-world impact and making a positive difference to the community we serve.

The esports group connects and sustains esports research carried out across the Creative Technologies area of research strength at the University of York, including Digital Creativity Labs, Weavr, and XR Stories and IGGI. Our portfolio of activities encompasses interdisciplinary research, knowledge exchange and knowledge transfer, rapid innovation, industrial R&D, product development and production. We work with industry, the third sector and policy makers to drive innovation in esports and the creative industries, in the UK and internationally.

ARC was initially established to connect esports research across disciplines and projects at the University of York, but realising that the network could be valuable to the esports community at large, ARC now invites any institutions, initiatives and individuals who are involved in esports research to join our global network. ARC is an open and inclusive environment. Read about our mission here.

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