Play Net-zero Nonzero Combo
The purpose of this game is to identify problems, stakeholders, innovations, and technologies that impact cities, to chart their interdependencies, and to collaboratively visualize solutions.
What’s Net-Zero Nonzero?
Net-Zero refers to the widespread movement to make buildings and cities net-zero, meaning they produce as much water and energy as they consume. Nonzero is a term that comes from game theory and refers to a “nonzero sum game” as opposed to a “zero sum game.” Zero sum games are where there are clear winners and losers, winners typically live and winners typically die. Applied to the environment, an example of a big zero-sum game is burning fossil fuels, as because there’s a limited supply, those with fuel win and those without lose. Nonzero sum games are also called win-win by people like salespeople, who are basically always looking to do business. Humans evolved to be hardwired to play both zero-sum and non-zero sum games, but we find that on balance, there’s a better return on nonzero ones. Cities are basically founded on nonzero sum outcomes- we all seek reasons to “do business.”