Lego receives Games for Change industry leadership award

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The Lego Group received the Games for Change Industry Leadership Award today at the Games for Change Awards Ceremony in New York.

Carolina Giuga, senior director of government and public affairs for the Americas at Lego, accepted the award on the Danish company’s behalf.

The Industry Leadership Award recognizes companies making remarkable social impact contributions in the games industry. Susanna Pollack, president of Games for Change, said in an interview that the company’s unmatched commitment to play in both physical and digital has made it stand out, and she said its focus on social impact is huge as well.

Giuga said that The Lego Group sets aside 25% of profits for its social impact efforts via the Lego Foundation. Those efforts include ensuring online safety, fostering creativity, instigating collaboration, and creating responsible digital citizenship through partnerships with Epic Games, UNICEF, and others.

The thoughtful integration of these programs and elements into their brand establishes The LEGO Group as an exemplary industry leader, Pollack said.

Lego tells kids how to protect themselves online.

Starting more than four years ago, the organization saw more and more triple-A studios and large game companies getting involved in the Games for Change community either directly or just initiating their own projects that align with the values of Games for Change.

“We wanted to acknowledge these companies because of the amazing work that they do, but also to offer inspiration to the larger community to see what’s possible,” Pollack said. “And hopefully this will drive more interest and activity in games and interactive media content for social good.”

“It’s a true honor,” Giuga said in an interview. “Honestly, I represent a large team at Lego that is focused on children’s rights, safety and wellbeing. And I think that this recognition from Games for Change is incredibly important for us.”


You can drive on land or sea in Lego 2K Drive.
You can drive on land or sea in Lego 2K Drive.

Lego launched its first video game in 1995 and it has had a phenomenal string of hits over the years thanks to the family-friendly gameplay and sense of humor in its titles.

Back in 2015, Lego started working with the United Nations’ UNICEF division to help improve children’s rights around the world. That year, the company launched the industry’s first digital child safety policy for children interacting with any of Lego’s digital products. It has also emphasized privacy and safety for children, and these efforts extend through all core functions of the company.

“We say that children are role models, and that sounds a little cliche,” Giuga said. “But the reality is that we try to incorporate children as creators of our products in helping us design them. It’ starts by bringing children to the table and listening to their voices.”

Carolina Giuga and David Tedesco accept industry leadership award at Games for Change.

Lego has partnered with companies like GameStop and Epic Games in spreading the word about its children’s rights programs.

“Putting information into the community is incredibly important,” Giuga said. “We also have a lot of cooperation between groups. And we go wherever kids are playing. Increasingly, it’s online.”

Lego has created a non-player character named Captain Safety to talk to kids about safety tips and ways to turn them into responsible digital citizens. Lego also puts a lot of stock in the idea of learning through play, and it uses that to convey its serious messages as well. Lego wants to get parents involved in conversations with kids about games, even if the parents aren’t so familiar with games. It brings up topics such as screen time, age-appropriate content and making purchases online.

Carolina Giuga, senior director of government and public affairs for the Americas at Lego.
Carolina Giuga, senior director of government and public affairs for the Americas at Lego, at Games for Change 2023.

“Some of this content can be used in school settings as well,” Giuga said.

Prior recipients of the award include Ubisoft, Microsoft and Schell Games.

“We hope it is inspirational for others and I’m encouraged that more companies are developing corporate social responsibility programs,” Pollack said.

Pollack said she was impressed with the community-facing resources that Lego makes available and its support for the gaming sector and the safety of children.

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