Big Decisions For A Green Future With Vers Beton

Big Decisions For A Green Future With Vers Beton

Case /

'The Green Port Boss' ('De Groene Havenbaas') is a game aiming to help understand the complexities involved in making the Port of Rotterdam more sustainable.

  • Client
  • Vers Beton
  • Project
  • Interactive game
  • Deliverables
  • Design & front-end
  • Tribe members
  • The Rodesk Tribe

Cut The Crap, Show Me The Visuals


The Port of Rotterdam ranks among the heaviest emitters of CO2 in the Netherlands, and from that dubious pole position, it is easily the largest polluter in Rotterdam as well. Although attempts at making the port more sustainable are being made, they tend to bog down in the complex nature of the issue. A range of factors play a part, causing any simple approach to fail. Vers Beton decided to make the matter more transparent, using investigative journalism in a playful manner by means of an online game. Rodesk joined in to launch this innovative user experience, helping Rotterdam citizens understand the problem in a smart way – and take steps toward a sustainable solution.

Our Mission

Rodesk is as Rotterdam as it gets, so when Vers Beton asked us to help tackle this Rotterdam-based issue, our gears were already grinding. Gamification is a great tool for anyone involved in UX: serious gaming allows users to catch on in situations simply presenting text causes people to switch off. Catching the many-headed hydra of CO2 emissions in our ports in game terms is better than trying to catch it in words. That is how we arrived at ‘The Green Port Boss’: players/users try walking in the shoes of a genuine end-boss of the harbour. In one day of virtual port management, they have to make their own decisions on a green future. While doing so, they get a first-hand experience of just how tricky solving this puzzle actually is.

The Port Boss

One round of ‘training on the job’ as a Port Boss reveals the impact of your decisions on energy, economy, and society when it comes to a more sustainable port. As you answer a sequence of six questions, your decisions determine the score that reveals how sustainable your actions will make the port, and why they have these effects. This allows you to wander through the game and through the subject matter, while the digital practice reveals how all the individual facets influence one another. After you play ‘The Green Port Boss’, you’ll have an insider’s perspective of just why the sustainability issue is such a tough nut to crack.

Rodesk User Experience Design

Energy Transition Model

Energy Transition Model

The game is powered by an energy transition model developed by Quintel research agency. This big data-based model illustrates how certain decisions affect outcomes such as CO2 emissions, costs, power demand, and biomass. The same model is used by government authorities and power companies, but by incorporating it into a game, we are taking a complex hodgepodge of information and turn it into useful knowledge for large numbers of people.

Rodesk User Experience Design

Rotterdam To The Core

‘The Green Port Boss’ came about through the concerted efforts of a team that is Rotterdam to the core: illustrator Bram van Rijen, aka Nozzman, Vers Beton project manager Hilde Westerink, our fellow studio resident Inge Jansen with a series of illuminating publications, and the Rodesk Tribe in full force. A sustainable collaboration for a sustainable project, then, aiming to help our fellow Rotterdam citizens and the rest of the country form their own opinions about an issue that ultimately affects us all. We already knew that Rotterdam is a city of action rather than words, but pairing that willingness to act with a healthy dose of understanding just might tip the scales towards a smart and sustainable CO2 policy for the city that we love.

We are taking a complex hodgepodge of information and turn it into useful knowledge for large numbers of people.

Rodesk User Experience Design
Ready To Make Your People Happy?

Ready To Make Your People Happy?

Laurens Boex Information about this case Contact our Strategy Director +31 6 28 232 452 Mail Laurens
Hilde Westerink
Hilde Westerink Business director at Vers Beton

“Working with Rodesk was very pleasant and organic. At the beginning of the project I had been given the feeling that everything would be arranged and was going to be alright, during the project this was actually the case.”

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