Game of Thrones Research Project

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Fan Survey
Title: Game of Thrones Research Project
Date(s): October 2016 -
Fandom(s): Game of Thrones
External Links: Game of Thrones Research Project
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The Game of Thrones Research Project is an international audience research project hosted at that launched in October 2016. The Project is independent of HBO and of George R. R. Martin and is conducted by a group of over 40 university researchers from all over the world. The Game of Thrones Project includes a questionnaire that takes around 20 minutes to complete.

This project is not-for-profit. [1]


Over the past 25 years, many commentators have sensed that 'fantasy' has changed beyond recognition. In book form, it has blossomed extravagantly. From 'the new weird' of the 1990s, to the increasing mixing of SF and fantasy, published fantasy has expanded and got ever more complex. And then of course there are 'wild cards' like Fifty Shades of Grey … In film, we have seen of course the huge expansions in technical capacity to make 'worlds' look real. We could each choose our own favourites and key examples, but surely The Lord of the Rings, Avatar,and The Hunger Games have transformed the public face of fantasy. In TV, series like The Vampire Diaries, Outlander, Supernatural, and True Blood, and many more. Fantasy has steadily become more present, and more varied.

What is going on? What do all these things mean to audiences and fans? The truth is, we don't yet know. Now, with Game of Thrones a new set of dimensions has been added. Not just that the book series is huge – and unfinished. More, perhaps, that this is such a doom-filled series, where the moment you form an affection for a character, s/he is likely to suffer horribly, and die. And all the time, hanging over everything is the coming Winter, the threat from the North, the White Walkers … and worse … All set in a world that is not ours, yet in a hundred ways reminds many people of ours. [2]

Project Aims

The Game of Thrones Research Project has a number of aims:

  • To capture the range of responses that people have to the series, overall – why and how it matters to people to follow the story, and see how it unfolds, but also to understand why and how some people have been upset by particular elements.
  • To see how, for different people, this series finds its place among other modern fantasy stories.
  • To understand how people are bonding with the very different kinds of characters that Game of Thrones offers.
  • To find out how people relate to the big controversies that have accompanied Game of Thrones.
  • To have a go at thinking how this 'fantasy' world of Westeros and beyond is seen to relate to our world.


The researchers involved in the Game of Thrones Research Project intend to publish some of the key results from the project in the online journal of audience and reception studies, Participations ("devoted to developing the broad field of study of cultural and media audiences.")


Romana Andò (Italy) | José Javier Sánchez Aranda (Spain) | Feona Attwood (UK) | Doris Baltruschat (Canada) | Martin Barker (UK) | Lucy Bennett (UK) | Joseba Bonaut (Spain) | Mark Bould (UK) | Mélanie Bourdaa (France) | Aryong Choi-Hantke (South Korea) | Despina Chronaki (Greece) | María José Establés (Spain) | Maria del mar Grandio (Spain) | Jason Grek-Martin (Canada) | Jennifer Grek-Martin (Canada) | Mar Guerrero (Spain) | Briony Hannell (UK) | Víctor Hernández-Santaolalla (Spain) | Irma Hirsjärvi (Finland) | Aino-Kaisa Koistinen (Finland)| Jyrki Korpua (Finland) | Urpo Kovala (Finland) | Katherine Larsen (USA) | Javier Lozano (Spain) | Elia Cornelio Marí (Mexico) | Richard McCulloch (UK) | Larisa Mikhaylova (Russia Federation) | Tom Phillips (UK) | Billy Proctor (UK) | Sarah Ralph (UK) | Regiane Ribeiro (Brazil) | Maria Ruotsalainen (Finland) | Lars Schmeink (Germany) | Felix Schröter (Germany) | Rikke Schubart (Denmark) | Laura Seligman (Brazil) | Clarissa Smith (UK) | Minhee Son (South Korea) | Liza Tsaliki (Greece) | Tanja Välisalo (Finland) | Michela Valquiria (Brazil)


  1. ^ About
  2. ^ About