NASPAA and the Batten School Announce Global Winners of the 2020 Student Simulation Competition

April 08, 2020


This year, nearly 350 students from 114 universities in 52 countries took part in the NASPAA-Batten Student Simulation Competition. Participants competed at seven global host sites from Budapest and Bangalore to Albany and Malibu. Developed by experts at the University of Virginia’s Center for Leadership Simulation and Gaming, this year’s simulation, Metropolitan: A Sustainable Transit Simulation was built using real-world data and challenged students to collaborate on transportation policies in order to improve the sustainability of their virtual city.

Judges at each site selected seven winners from the 64 competing teams based on several criteria including simulation scores, reasoning skills, and policy presentations. From these finalists, a panel of three prominent global experts recently identified the Global Winners of this year’s competition.

Congratulations to all the students who participated in the competition, to the 2020 site winning teams and especially to the top three teams listed below! This is an outstanding accomplishment! 


First place

  • Dontavious Waller: Georgia Southern University
  • Elizabeth Carter: University of Georgia
  • Kathryn Charpin: The George Washington University
  • Leah Roach: Regent University
  • Rudolf-Victor de Leon Dinglas: Regent University

Watch Final Presentation | View PowerPoint  | View Policy Memo


Second Place

  • Natia Mikelbaia: Georgian Institute of Public Affairs
  • Lodewijk Sebastiaan Beschoor Plug: Delft University of Technology
  • Benedek Farkas: Central European University
  • Sofia af Hällström: United Nations University - MERIT
  • Rezaeva Anastasia: Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration

Watch Final Presentation | View PowerPoint | View Policy Memo




  • Bridger Langfur: University of California San Diego
  • Victoria Williams: Oregon State University
  • Kevan Mellendick: Naval Postgraduate School
  • Georgina Perez: University of La Verne

Watch Final Presentation | View PowerPoint | View Policy Memo




This year’s global judges thoroughly reviewed the final presentations, policy memos, and video presentations of the seven site winning teams. They assessed teams’ critical reasoning skills, creativity, use of data, organization, and application of a public service perspective to decision making.

The global judges, who reviewed the final presentations and memos, were extremely impressed with all the teams who made it to the top round. The competition was very close.

However, what made the top team stand out was their skills in organization in addition to their applicability of a public service perspective to policy and decision making. This team had a strong focus on the importance of sustainability and on the short and long term affects on multiple stakeholders.  They devised an exceptional community engagement strategy, and focused on the importance of developing a strategy for their city’s public transportation infrastructure. Well done!