Doris C. Rusch is a game designer, researcher, play aficionado and holds a position as assistant professor for game design at DePaul University in Chicago where she founded the “Play for Change” lab. Before that she did post doctoral work at GAMBIT Game Lab, MIT, and Vienna University of Technology (Austria).
Rusch's work is focused on the theory and practice of game design, particularly in regard to games that model the "human experience”, create empathy and can be used for mental health activism. She was the lead designer and vision holder of award winning and featured projects such as "Zombie Yoga" for Kinect, "Elude", a metaphorical game on depression, and "Akrasia", a game that models addiction and “For the Records”, a transmedia project focused on young adults and mental health. Having completed studies in Literature, Philosophy, Comparative Media Studies and English at Vienna University, she received her Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics and Interactive Systems in 2004.