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dr.ir. R.J. den Haan (Robert-Jan)

Assistant Professor

About Me

Robert-Jan den Haan is a postdoctoral researcher focusing on the design of serious games to support stakeholders in collaboratively exploring complexity in environmental management. He has a background in Industrial Design Engineering, specializing in human centred design and interaction design. During his doctoral research, he further specialized in these two design areas as well as in designing serious games, facilitating stakeholder participation, managing interdisciplinary work, data visualization and programming.

Robert-Jan’s research focuses on designing and using serious games to explore (environmental) complexity, foster stakeholder participation and stimulate social learning. This type of serious games aim to provide stakeholders with a safe experimentation environment to collaboratively try out management strategies in game scenarios. By playing such serious games, players learn about the environmental system, possible management interventions and trade-offs between interventions as well as about how other players view both the problem at hand and its solution.

In the design of serious games, Robert-Jan focuses on developing interaction methods to enable stakeholders to engage with computer models that may be perceived as black boxes. He focuses on enabling stakeholders to learn about how the models work and how they can be used in decision-making by providing such interaction methods. Therefore, the interaction methods should have a low threshold to use, be easy to use and invite active experimentation. Moreover, in the context of games, the interaction methods should support collaboration and thereby enable serious games to be an effective boundary objects.

In his doctoral research, Robert-Jan developed the Virtual River Game, a serious game where stakeholders can collaboratively test and evaluate management strategies in Dutch river management, as part of the RiverCare program (NWO Perspectief). During this research, he became convinced about the need to make hydrodynamic models (water flow) used in environmental decision-making more accessible and transparent. For the Virtual River Game, he therefore applied the concept of tangible interaction to link a physical game board with digital models. Players apply management interventions and interact with the models by changing game pieces on the board. Model output is subsequently projected on the game board, visualizing the effects on the locations where players made changes. He successfully defended his dissertation on the 23rd of October, 2020. He will continue this line of research, directly building on the Virtual River results, as a postdoc in the SaltiSolutions program (NWO Perspectief) on salt intrusion in deltas.

Expertise

Earth & Environmental Sciences
Environmental Management
Learning
River
River Management
Stakeholder
Mathematics
Serious Games
Social Sciences
Environmental Management
Social Learning

Publications

Recent
Vinke - de Kruijf, J. , Verbrugge, L. N. H., Schröter , B. , den Haan, R-J. , Cortes Arevalo, V. J., Fliervoet, J. M., Henze, J., & Albert, C. (2022). Knowledge co-production and researcher roles in transdisciplinary environmental management projects. Sustainable development, 30(2), 393-405. https://doi.org/10.1002/sd.2281
den Haan, R-J. , van der Voort, M., Baart, F. , Berends, K. , & Hulscher, S. (2020). The Virtual River Game: Using a Physical Game Board as an Interface to a Hydrodynamic Model. Abstract from 10th International Congress on Environmental Modelling and Software, iEMSs 2020, Brussels, Belgium.
den Haan, R. J. , van Dijk, J., Baart, F. , van der Voort, M. , & Hulscher, S. (2019). How a Tangible User Interface Contributes to Desired Learning Outcomes of the Virtual River Serious Game. In X. Fang (Ed.), HCI in Games: First International Conference, HCI-Games 2019, Held as Part of the 21st HCI International Conference, HCII 2019, Orlando, FL, USA, July 26–31, 2019, Proceedings (pp. 288-306). (Lecture Notes in Computer Science; Vol. 11595). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-22602-2_22

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Contact Details

Visiting Address

University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst - Ring (building no. 21)
De Horst 2
7522LW  Enschede
The Netherlands

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University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst Complex (building no. 20), room W258
De Horst 2
7522LW  Enschede
The Netherlands

Navigate to location

University of Twente
Campus & Facility Management
Horst Complex (building no. 20), room W258
De Horst 2
7522LW  Enschede
The Netherlands

Navigate to location

University of Twente
Campus & Facility Management
Horst - Ring (building no. 21)
De Horst 2
7522LW  Enschede
The Netherlands

Navigate to location

Mailing Address

University of Twente
Faculty of Engineering Technology
Horst - Ring
P.O. Box 217
7500 AE Enschede
The Netherlands