Baltic Marine Environment
Protection Commission

Digitalisation of game concepts to raise awareness and educate on the status of the Baltic Sea – Call for tenders

HELCOM recently secured two grants which include aspects of awareness raising utilising gamification (Play-ducate and HOLAS to all). These projects include two separate concepts for developing enjoyable and educational games about the Baltic Sea, its ecology, its status and its links with society, aiming to educate and raise awareness amongst children, youth and the general public.

It has become increasingly apparent that awareness is a critical component in the successful implementation of our work. This is reflected for example in the 2021 update of the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP) where awareness raising is included as a horizontal topic (i.e. relevant across the board) and is the focus of one of the agreed 199 actions. Moreover, this issue is globally recognised as significant, with topics such as Ocean Literacy becoming increasingly important, as well as increasing interest in the use of games for knowledge transfer. While two game concepts are already in place HELCOM is now exploring the possibility to digitalise these concepts to enable broader distribution and lower thresholds for use. HELCOM is subsequently inviting suitable companies/consultants/institutions to provide offers for converting these existing concepts into long-lasting and adaptable digital platforms enabling online gameplay (both single and multiplayer) that can be used for international communication and outreach. The foreseen tasks are outlined in more detail below.

Tasks for tender:

HELCOM is looking for developers/companies to execute the technical and/or support the conceptual development of the existing concepts, making them available for wider audiences and in a suitable manner to maintain the elements of both joy and awareness raising.

  • The digitalisation of a collaborative deck building board game, including a minimum of two levels of complexity where the basic version is largely language independent. The game logic, rules and illustrations for the game are already available (see more details below). Digital gameplay should be 2D and target tablets/smart phones and enable multiplayer mode of between 2-4 people using the same device. Online gaming may not be feasible at this stage, however if possible the development would be done so as to not preclude online gaming in the future. The game is foreseen to be downloadable free of charge and will not include any in-app purchase options. The work is to be completed by the end of 2024.
    HELCOM is currently working in close collaboration with a small board game developer ( to convert an existing game to represent a Baltic Sea ecosystem. The general structure of the game will be the same as that outlined for Ecosfera – More complexity will be added through the use of the expansion cards for an additional level. The Ecosfera Rulebook is available at this link. HELCOM is currently modifying and expanding on this concept to align it with Baltic Sea ecology and more clearly show the challenges and barriers facing managers working with the Baltic Sea and intends to, in addition to the physical board game, translate the game into an online digital platform to allow it to be received by a larger audience, as well as utilised in digital form for educational or awareness raising purposes.
  • The development of a digital puzzle tile-matching game based on linking ecosystem components, environmental pressures/human activities in line with the logic of ecological/societal interactions in the Baltic Sea (provisional idea). Digital gameplay should target tablets/smart phones, single player mode only. The game is foreseen to be language independent. Digital gameplay should be 2D and target tablets/smart phones. Online gaming is not considered at this stage. The game is foreseen to be downloadable free of charge and will not include any in-app purchase options. The work is to be completed by the end of 2024.

HELCOM reserves the right to choose the offer best suited to the aim and vision of the two projects supplying the funding for the work, as well as to modify the tasks as needed to accommodate the available budget.

Tendering process

  • Interested companies/ consultants/ institutions are invited to contact the HELCOM Secretariat ( to express their interest. Initial contact should be submitted by 7 August 2024 at the latest.
  • The HELCOM Secretariat team involved in the work will present the existing game ideas/concepts in greater detail and open for discussion or questions.
  • Interested companies/ consultants/ institutions will make offers for either one or both of the tasks listed above, which will also include a description of the proposed development/outcome.
  • The HELCOM Secretariat will evaluate all received offers and evaluate them based on the proposals made and against the budget available in the projects providing funding for the task.

About us

The Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission – also known as the “Helsinki Commission” or “HELCOM” – was established in 1974 ( All coastal countries of the Baltic Sea, as well as the European Union, are Contracting Parties (members). The HELCOM Secretariat coordinates the work and meetings of the Helsinki Commission, and ensures that the Contracting Parties meet their obligations under the Helsinki Convention.

The organisation is thus an Intergovernmental Organisation (IGO) working at the science-policy interface via cooperation across the region and across the scientific and management community. The focus of this diverse and huge collaborative effort is however singular – with the protection, improvement, and sustainable use of the Baltic Sea ecosystem at its heart. We are a non-profit organisation with a strong environmental focus.

We welcome you to join us in developing our initial concepts with a view to exploring novel approaches to awareness raising.