Damien Djaouti

Damien Djaouti

Associate Professor in Computer Science - University of Montpellier (France)

Born on January 17th, 1984.
Email :

Academic address:
IUFM de l'académie de Montpellier
2 place Marcel Godechot
34092 Montpellier, FRANCE.
Field of research :

- Design and use of video games for purposes going beyond entertainment (Serious Games): education, communication, healthcare, politics, art...
- Study and development of theoretical methods and software tools that can help to design video games.
- History of video games.

Professional experience

Since September 2012

Associate teacher in Computer Science.

Teaching future teachers how to use ICT with their students for the Factulté d'Education / ESPE of Montpellier (ex-IUFM)  (public french school for teachers). Also doing scientific research about "Serious Games" in the LIRDEF laboratory.

Employer: University of  Montpellier.


From January 2012 to September 2012

Post-Doctoral fellowship in Computer Science.

Pursuing the research work on "Serious Games" started with the PhD. Involved in setting up funding requests for future research project (on a national level), and performed research for two active projects of the laboratory:

  • Game And Learning Alliance (GALA), an European network of excellence dedicated to the use of (video)games for learning. This network gathers more than 30 partners from academia and private sector, and it was a good opportunity to mount international joint research projects on "Serious Games."
  • Generic Serious Game, a french research project aiming to build a platform that would allow teachers from universities to quickly and easily create Serious Games for their students. This project clearly hopes to help Serious Games being used inside french universities.
Employer:  Institut de Recherche en Informatique de Toulouse (IRIT)



PhD Student through an university-industry partnership (CIFRE contract).

Wrote a PhD thesis in computer science while working for three industrial organizations:

  • The "Game Library" from "Odyssud" culturel centre (France). Inside this cultural centre, I was involved in many cultural activities related to videogames, such as : setting up videogame creation contest, design of an "alternate reality game" , demonstration of Serious Games during a festival for young people, management of cultural events about videogames...
  • OKTAL, a private company specialized in the design of simulator suited for professional training. I was involved in the design of "geDriver", a Serious Game to teach ecological driving habits. I also participated in a background analysis of the internal development tools.
  • SEM Constellation, who built an ecological town called "Andromède". I designed, developed and evaluated two Serious Games meant to present this new ecological town to local inhabitants.

Since 2007

Videogame and game design teacher.

Teaching theoretical lessons on videogaming history and culture. Also teaching on game design (theories and applied methodologies) in both public and private courses.

Main employers: Université Montpellier III - département arts plastiques, Université Montpellier II - département informatique, Université Toulouse III - département informatique, Université Toulouse II - département arts plastiques, I.N.S.A. Toulouse, E.S.A.V., C.N.F.P.T. Midi-Pyrénées and E.T.P.A..


Multimedia and webdesign instructor.

Teaching Flash, PHP and HTML/CSS software technologies to professionals, alongside with the management of "end-course" projects. Also teaching algorithms science and the basics of programming for the web.

Employer : ACT Formation.



Multimedia designer and developer.

Design and development for websites (2.0 projects, galeries...), CDRom and videogames (casual and serious games), mainly by using Flash, PHP/MySQL and XHTML/CSS. Main employers : Milan Presse, Ja-Games and Magelis .

PhD Thesis

Serious Game Design : theoretical and technical study of the creation of videogames designed for serious purposes.

PhD Thesis in Computer Science.

Defended on November 28th, 2011 in the University of Toulouse III in front of the following jury:

  • Jean-Pierre Jessel, professor at the University of Toulouse (IRIT) – Thesis director
  • Pascal Estraillier, professor at the University of La Rochelle (L3I) – In-depth evaluator
  • Franck Tarpin-Bernard, professor at the University of Grenoble (LIG) – In-depth evaluator
  • Abdelkader Gouaich, associate professor at the University of Montpellier (LIRMM)
  • Jean-Christophe Routier, professor at the University of Lille (LIFL)
  • Philippe Palanque, professor at the University of Toulouse (IRIT)
  • Josette Hospital, director of the "Game Library" from the Odyssud cultural centre
  • Gilles Gallée, technical director of OKTAL

Keywords : Serious Game, Game Design, videogames, creation, easing, pedagogy, constructionnism, authorware, game creation tools, modding.


Nowadays, videogames are an important part of popular culture. Although videogames are most famous as leisure, the wave of « Serious Games » aims to use them for a wide range of serious purposes: teaching, communication, therapy, professional training, advertising, political propaganda…


This thesis focuses on the design of such « Serious Games ». More specifically, we will try to identify means able to ease the creation of Serious Games. To achieve this goal, we will first concentrate on the analysis of means used to ease the creation of entertainment videogames. We will then try to evaluate how these means can be relevant to ease the creation of Serious Games. Through this process, we will specify the difference between the design of an entertainment videogame and a Serious Game. This research was conducted with the help of an industrial partnership involving three companies and institutions. The main contributions of this thesis are:


  • A global view of the « Serious Game » field through a corpus of 2218 titles.
  • An analysis of the « theoretical » tools able to ease the creation of videogames, backed with four case studies coming from our industrial partners. This study of the « theoretical » side of the Serious Game Design process will result in a synthetic methodology to create Serious Games.
  • An analysis of the « technical » tools able to ease the creation of videogames, based on a corpus of 400 software tools. This study will result in an open and collaborative database of videogame creation tools.
  • An evaluation of these « theoretical » and « technical » tools through a university course whose goal is to teach the basics of Game Design. This evaluation will point out several limitations in the available tools. This study will thus result in a specification of desired features for a tool able to ease the creation of Serious Games in an educational environment.
  • Two software experimentations aiming to create a tool embedding all the features listed in the previous specification. The first experiment failed to reach this goal, but the second one shows a promising mid-term result: this prototype tool was successfully used to create one of the Serious Games designed for our industrial partners.

Download the PhD Thesis (written in French - PDF - 11 Mo)

Scientific publications

Conferences and round tables

Other publications

Animations for scientific, professional ou cultural events

Media references

Last modification : 17/03/2021