The Rice Game

A simulation game on the international rice trade

Game instructions :Jeu du Riz

  • 14 players at least
  • Duration : 3 hrs
  • Level : Secondary school pupils and onwards

The game can be purchased at RONGEAD for 15€ (available in French, English and Spanish).

Origin and Description of the Rice Game:

Sometimes good can spring from bad!

This old proverb could well illustrate the circumstances that gave birth to the Rice Game. Everything began at the end of the seventies, a time when we began backing a rice-growing project in eastern Zaire. Continuing the aims of achieving food self-sufficiency, and based on solid technical foundations, the project nonetheless failed during the period from 1980 to 85. The cause was a fall in the world market price for rice, combined with a massive influx of imported produce. The writing was on the wall. In an increasingly globalised economy, it had become impossible to set up development projects able to succeed in a geographically localised framework.

The opening of the Uruguay Round of GATT in September 1986 only strengthened this awareness. The reason for initiating this series of negotiations was primarily because of conflicting interests between the United States and Europe, both of whose efficient and over-protected agriculture sectors competed on the world market. What was decided during the GATT negotiations would obviously impact on Africa.

Since then, we at RONGEAD have analysed and studied the mechanisms of world trade in general and of rice in particular. This examination had led us to progressively bring to light the complex policies underlying what should be designated as the "new United States - Asia - Africa trading triangle". This experience accumulated over a long period has given rise to the Rice Game whose declared objective is first and foremost to permit "learning while playing".

Designed from the outset as a development tool, the Rice Game has developed little by little into a teaching kit containing the elements of the Game and a teacher’s manual. This gives a detailed description of the basic rules and comprises a series of theme sheets dealing with the different institutions and subjects involved in the game.

We hope that this kit will make the game accessible to the greatest number of people, in schools and universities, and in professional and non-governmental organisations in both the North and the South.

Its design and production would not have been possible without the co-financing and collaboration of the General Direction of Education and Research (French Ministry of Agriculture) and the French League for Education and Vocational Training, nor without the financial support of the Charles-Leopold Mayer Foundation for the Progress of Humanity and the European Commission (D.G. VIII). We thank them all for their support.

 And now, it’s up to you to play!

To download :

       Purchase order form (fr) (PDF : 49.5 kb)

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