CRISP is an advancement of the students’ project krisenspiel. This actor-centered simulation game is annually organized by students for students at Freie Universität Berlin.
The founding members of CRISP participated and organized the krisenspiel several times. However, their repeated involvement in simulation game exercises proved to be more than an amusing school project. They felt as though they had discovered a powerful tool to make complex systems accessible. By participating and watching others appreciate this innovative way of learning, they became even more convinced of its merits and delved into the method.
By creating a model of reality - that is to say a little parallel world - strong personal ties emerged. This had the effect of laying the groundwork for applying simulations to other circumstances and to adjust them to the needs of conflict management.
After months of investigation and contacting experts in the field of conflict-transformation, trauma treatment, and simulation-game design as well as possible donors, a promising idea of potential work became apparent.
In an exchange of thoughts and ideas with others, the project group was formed. They taught themselves project-management skills and finally realized that they had passed the point-of-no-return.
In November 2007 the non-profit, non governmental organization CRISP was founded.
Our first project started with an information tour, presenting our idea to partners in the Balkans in order to get comments, tips, critique and opinions from people on the ground. Until today we cooperate closely with these partners.
The first project was called ConSim_Kosovo_2008, conducted in the beautiful little town of Novo Brdo/Novoberde [Kosovo]. With 24 brave participants from Kosovo, Serbia and Macedonia, we simulated the independence of Kosovo.
Although it required a great deal of improvisation and was nothing short of an extreme experience, our partners and participants encouraged us to continue what we had started.
And that is what we did.
Today we are one of the very few organizations worldwide that develops and applies the method of simulation-gaming to the field of conflict management while simultaneously conducts a considerable number of related projects.
We are eternally grateful for all these people who supported us from the beginning, during a time when CRISP was merely a bunch of crazy students’ crazy idea.