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The Swedish Museum of Natural History

What is the value of water?

Two games that show how simple everyday choices can help preserve oceans and waterways for future generations.

As part of the Swedish Museum of Natural History’s base exhibition World of Water, we have developed two games. The two games playfully but concretely provide insights into how everyday decisions can make us care better for water.

In the game “Decomposition”, players are pre- sented with ten common pieces of garbage floating around on the open sea, and a time- line where the garbage must be placed in the correct order based on the time it takes for them to decompose. Some everyday products remain in the sea for close to a million years.

In the “Water Footprint” game, players compose their daily meals and see directly how big the total water footprint throughout the entire production chain is, to get all the ingredients to the table. Maybe you have to opt out of the avocado on the breakfast sandwich to get your water budget together for the day. Having to adjust their own eating habits in order to finish the game, makes many players reflect on their daily choices after the visit.

“World of water” touches on the life in our oceans and waterways, but also on how we can preserve them for future generations. These two games show how we all can contribute through our everyday choices.

The game "Decomposition" on site in the exhibition. Behind the screen is a diorama of trash on a beach. The exhibition is under construction and will open to the public on June 4, 2024.
The "Water footprint" and "Decomposition" games on site in the exhibition, which is under construction.

Project: Decomposition / Water footprint

Two screen-based games about how simple everyday choices can help preserve oceans and waterways for future generations, linked to the theme Climate and research in the base exhibition World of Water.

Exhibition: World of water
Client: Swedish Museum of Natural History
Target audience: 10–99 years

Project start: 2023-02-01
Opening: 2024-06-04
Size: 450 m²


Decomposition – “How long do things remain in the ocean?” Different materials break down at different rates in the sea. Some remain for several hundred thousand years.

Water Footprint – “Can you eat for less than 18 bathtubs of water per day?” Each food ingredient requires a certain amount of water to be produced – its water footprint. By composing different meals, awareness is created about the water footprint of individual ingredients.


  • Project manager: Claes Enger
  • Producer: Charlotte Ek
  • Game concept: Alexis Holmqvist, Per Gantelius
  • Game development: Per Gantelius
  • Exhibition design: Expology


  • Two independent physical gaming stations with touch screens and single board computers.