Esports BAR: Esports can teach the next generation more than just gaming and coding

02 September 2020


This is a guest piece by Esports BAR.

In recent years, there’s been an encouraging development in the growth of dedicated esports courses offered in both the US and Europe. North American universities offer scholarships in the subject, recognised figures have invested, with NBA star Tony Parker launching his own esports academy in France, and distinguished organisations like the British Esports Association unveiling the world’s first Esports BTEC qualifications.

But the lessons esports can offer education in broader terms go beyond specialist qualifications. The qualities needed in committing to a career in the sector and the chance of such a career could both be huge motivators to the next generation at one of the most uncertain and challenging times for teenagers considering their futures.

Will this momentous time in our history with the world’s education systems having been forced online in recent months perhaps be the turning point that truly recognises the wider benefits of tech, maybe specifically the benefits of digital phenomena like esports, to students everywhere?

Esports BAR Education
Credit: Esports BAR

It’s certainly a topic on the minds of the world’s industry leaders and will be on the agenda of the biggest B2B esports events, such as this month’s Esports BAR+ Americas. The conference will be the first fully online event in the Esports BAR series of esports business gatherings.

Anita Elberse
Credit: Anita Elberse

Head of Content, Debora Atala, is a passionate believer in the potential value of esports to education, saying: “Esports and its surrounding industry has an almost unique ability to engage students. Its appeal is pretty much unrivalled.

“Not only that, but the discipline required in esports development would also be of huge benefit to students of all subjects and the motivation that esports career ambition can inspire could be an incredible driver for students to work hard. This really could be the moment to build a deeper connection between esports and education, which is why we’re so keen to discuss it at future Esports BAR events.”

A prominent and well-respected educator will feature at Esports BAR+ Americas, September 22nd-25th. Anita Elberse, Lincoln Filene Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, will deliver a keynote. Elberse develops and teaches the MBA, “Businesses of Entertainment, Media, and Sports,” which ranks among the most sought-after courses in the world-famous school’s curriculum.

Having recently written a case study on Ninja, her keynote at the digital conference, How To Thrive in The Entertainment Industry, will touch on the importance of education in pursuing successful careers in entertainment, with esports soaring as one of the highest revenue earners for the entertainment sector overall. (See White Paper, What Is Esports? for more on this).

Esports BAR+ Americas
Credit: Esports BAR

With brands and institutions focusing on developing gaming and coding skills, perhaps esports can offer a unique opportunity for students to build solid academic skills and prepare the next generation for an achievable, exciting career with genuine appeal and real potential for a sustainable future.

As Harvard’s Elberse said herself: The impact of digital technology is creating bigger brands and bigger superstars”. And it’s not just the stars of tomorrow that a stronger presence of esports in education could foster. With other attractive career paths open to the esports industry’s future execs, from aspiring developers to specialist lawyers and journalists, as well as analysts and marketers, there’s plenty to motivate students considering their options for further and higher education.

Anita Elberse’ keynote, How To Thrive In The Entertainment Industry, is broadcast at 3pm CEST on September 24th as part of Esports BAR+ Americas, for which Esports Insider is a media partner. Esports BAR will also host a dedicated education panel at the next Esports BAR event in Cannes in 2021. Updates will be published on its site.