Łukasz Kaczmarek, Ph.D., Professor at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, visited Stanford University (USA) on February 20-27, 2022. The host was Prof. James Gross, director of the Psychophysiology Laboratory at Stanford University. During his stay, Prof. Kaczmarek presented plans for further research on gaming and streaming psychology.
Stanford University is recognized as one of the top three universities globally and first in the field of psychology. Prof. James Gross is the leading expert in emotion regulation. The collaboration between the two scientists has been ongoing since 2017 and has resulted in several publications. During the visit, Prof. Kaczmarek presented a novel approach to using gaming and streaming in research on the psychophysiology of emotions. He gave a speech, "Gaming and beyond - how to turn video game live streaming into an affective research paradigm." Prof. Kaczmarek's says:
"The unique motivational and emotional involvement of gamers is likely to break the deadlock in laboratory research on emotions. The weak point of most research on emotions is the lack of effective methods to elicit intense and authentic emotions, a missing ingredient that players can contribute. Another problem of laboratory research is the low involvement of participants in typical activities proposed to them to measure their performance. Video gamers are unique again due to their dedication and engagement. An additional and unique aspect of the planned gaming research is the focus on streaming activity. Video game live streaming intensifies, deepens, and broadens emotional-behavioral phenomena by giving them a meaningful social layer. The research will also examine gamers' physiological burden and potential health effects. This is of interest, especially in the case of streaming, which is extremely taxing to the body and mind. Currently, about 3 billion people play computer games, 1 billion watch gaming streams, and tens of millions are involved in streaming! Noteworthy, studies show that about 95% of gamers play in a controlled manner, and the negative phenomena affect only a fraction. Moreover, although gaming used to be associated with men, nowadays the proportion of male and female gamers is almost equal!"
Prof. Kaczmarek has been researching the psychophysiology of positive emotions for almost two decades. His interest is in studying their structure and function in different areas of life, such as intimate relationships or esports. As part of the Positive Gaming & Streaming Lab, he is starting a new series of studies on emotional processes among video game streamers. He tests his novel psychological model of gaming and streaming activity. Prof. Kaczmarek runs Psychology & Gaming channel (Facebook and YouTube), popularizing gaming and streaming among psychologists and psychology among gamers. He is the winner of the Nvidia Broadcast (2021) national contest for gaming streamers organized by Nvidia, Corsair, and Komputronik. He has published academic articles in prestigious journals and has received numerous grants. He is co-editor of the Journal of Happiness Studies (Springer Publishing).
Link to a short interview with Prof. James Gross: