Let’s unite with gameful optimism!

I’m generally an optimistic person. I usually overcome challenges by motivating myself with inner conversations and, in a sense, turning challenges into a play, like a theatre. This is typically the case, even when pessimistic and inert people surround me.
One day, I had an enlightening experience that let me explore that individual optimism is not always enough when facing social issues. After this experience, I realized the importance of cooperating with others fruitfully and decided to be part of a bigger plan. Here is the story:

I had a shocking experience when I applied for a travel visa to Portugal for the Erasmus Student Exchange Program in 2007. I was mistreated and thrown out of the consulate after arguing with the consulate officers. In 2010, I started a campaign based on this shock I had experienced before. Because this time, the problem I was experiencing was an issue that I could not solve individually and concerned society. During this incident, I created a campaign to start the “Visa-Free Europe” campaign and even received funding from the European Union. Our campaign succeeded to a certain extent in promoting a shared understanding of solidarity by bringing together young people whose freedom of travel is denied and young people from different European Countries. However, we could not remove the visa requirement for achieving freedom of mobility since the removal of the visa depends on the relations between countries and the rulers of the nations.

Nevertheless, this experience allowed us to unite as young people eager to develop international projects and establish a non-governmental organization in 2013. After 10 years, this non-governmental organization has turned into something more than a community where we enjoy sharing time and feeling safe. As a result of the evaluations we made during the pandemic, our strategy was reformed, and we decided to work in line with the goals of the United Nations.

There were moments when I needed more motivation in the association’s work due to the lack of interest in society and the inefficiency of social and political conditions. However, I focused on my personal development and career in such situations. I entered the academic career path in 2014, which let me complete my master’s and Ph.D. degrees while working full-time at one of the best universities in the country. I honestly did not study that much to get a title. I wholeheartedly believe in the importance of individuals who continuously improve themselves, research for reality, and are optimistic about shaping the world’s future.

I believe shaping the future is possible with curious, optimistic individuals without being stuck in certain ideologies. I aim to establish a gameful community that focuses on developing their skills and contributing to global challenges. I would like to understand and implement gamification to promote collaboration for the objectives of Renaissance Institute ( For this reason, I would like to cooperate with individuals who strive to increase their optimism and ongoing personal development and seek change and transformation in society in the next ten years. I am excited to be here to pursue reality with concrete steps and rebuild the truth together.
Özgür Yaşar

Posted in Publications.

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