This question, Designing a worldbuilding workshop for policymakers, seems to have multiple problems as it doesn't ask a single clear question, and it isn't really about world building, instead it's looking for advice relating to world-building.

That said it seems like a question people in this community might be well placed to answer, and might be interested in.

Is there an appropriate place to ask questions like this (for example perhaps here on meta), or if not could it be modified in such a way that it would be appropriate somewhere?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I know I've seen positively upvoted questions with no votes to close about mapmaking and mapmaking software. I feel like map building software is a brother to what you're suggesting asking. In the Help Center I can't find any discussion that either strikes down "world building advice" or supports it... but neither can I find such language about mapmaking. $\endgroup$ – Nex Terren Apr 3 at 15:16
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ There is always the chat for abstract stuff, and the sandbox for when you aren't sure that your question is worded right to maximize reception. $\endgroup$ – AndyD273 Apr 3 at 15:22
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @AndyD273 can newcomers use chat? $\endgroup$ – user42528 Apr 3 at 15:23
  • $\begingroup$ @Ben I think you need 10 points or somesuch? It's a pretty low barrier to entry. chat.stackexchange.com/ and the Factory Floor is the main chat. $\endgroup$ – Nex Terren Apr 3 at 15:47
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @NexTerren Close, its 20 points to join chat. $\endgroup$ – James Apr 3 at 16:17
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @Ben It's pretty easy to get the 20 point admittance price. Should be attainable by the time you've hung around long enough to understand how the site works. Also, if you get a few points in any SE stack you'll start off here at 100, so it's only enough of a hurdle to keep spammers from swamping the place with cheap viagra links. $\endgroup$ – AndyD273 Apr 3 at 17:09
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I'm forcing the issue with this Meta question and this Main question. $\endgroup$ – JBH Apr 9 at 21:17

Generally questions like this fall into the or tags.

The resources tag was designed for users to request books, websites, tools or whatever else they need regarding a specific topic.

Processes was created to discuss the actual act of world building.

Now, getting to the question at hand. It's an interesting question, and I definitely want to answer it...that said I think it is far too broad. I could easily write a book on the topic...

I am not sure if there is a way to narrow it down or not. But the idea of using techniques we have figured out here on the site and applying them to real world problems seems a good thing to do.

I am currently inclined to think that something like this is too much for a single question and is probably best addressed in chat.

  • $\begingroup$ I am currently inclined to think that something like this is too much for a single question and is probably best addressed in chat" ~ maybe not even there, might what the OP (of the original "question") really be after be more along the lines of a new SE structured to provide the service he's after? $\endgroup$ – Pelinore Apr 3 at 17:22

this answer is heavily inspired by James's answer, and several comments.

As James pointed out, there are tags under which the question fits, suggesting it is not fundamentally out of scope for the main world building site.

But it seems to be too much for a single question - i.e. is too broad. Chat has been suggested as a place where this topic could be discussed. This however doesn't get the full benefit of the question and answer format, and is off limits to brand new users like the OP of the question under discussion.

Therefore I suggest that the best way to use this site to learn about that topic is:

  1. Think of a few specific, answerable questions based on that question, which can be written with just one question in the question body. That is, break it down into more manageable chunks.
  2. Post the best of these as individual questions on the main site.
  3. Use the Sandbox for Proposed Questions for questions you want to ask but aren't sure about.
  4. After posting several questions on the topic you should hopefully have enough points to participate in chat, where you can discuss the more loosely defined ideas that don't lend themselves well to full questions.

First in a general sense, I agree with James on the tags and this question itself being too broad as it stands. However, I do think it could be limited to a scope allowable by SE and Worldbuilding (or at least other similar questions could be). So I want to speak to this.

At this point the question asks 4 questions (one is in the header to the bullet points):

  • resources that you have used in worldbuilding
  • What are some of the more successful frameworks and engaging approaches that have helped you connect a re-imagined future to the current status quo?
  • Has anyone encountered a packaged thought exercise that that frames and guide this kind of activity which I could adapt to a different audience?
  • What hasn’t been helpful? And what holes do you see in this approach?

Now the OP just needs to remove the first question - that is always too broad and a list style answer which is counter to SE's model. However, 2-4 could be saved if the OP did some research on his own and asked about specific methodologies. For example, for this or future questions:

  • Asking: When participating in world-building workshops, did you find that storyboarding (or story maps) were an engaging and effective method for developing processes within the world?

  • OR: Did picking a well-known story or fairy tale, and then further developing the world behind the story allow people to better grasp world-building concepts by providing a framework to start with? Did you encounter any major problems with this approach?

  • OR: Did grouping participants and then using an open brain storming session within the groups to build essential traits of a selected environment (then sorting, cataloging, and expanding based on these) provide both engagement and creative discussion among the groups?

These questions ask about either a specific methodology or practice or a limited number of them (if all 3 were asked on the same question). By doing this one helps to ensure answers have a focus and are not too broad.


So I think in general questions such as this are fine and even good to have included with the tag. As long as they focus their scope onto a selection of methodologies rather than just "what have you used?" or "what are the best ones?". As this question has such an open scope - it is too broad and the OP would have to add language which limits the methodologies they are researching.

Most of this is based on participation on Academia.SE and what is allowed there & how I've learned/taught worldbuilding on occasion.


You must log in to answer this question.