Amanda Cote is Associate Professor and Director of the Serious Games Certificate in the Department of Media and Information at Michigan State University. Her work focuses on the industry and culture of games, with an emphasis on areas such as gender, identity, and representation; game development and labor; and collegiate esports.

For instance, Cote’s book Gaming Sexism draws on critical explorations of industry texts and practices, as well as interviews with female gamers, to explore gaming’s conflicting trends towards greater diversity and greater discrimination. Although the spread of casual, social, and mobile games has led researchers, journalists, and players to believe that video gaming is opening up to previously marginalized audiences, especially women, the past decade has simultaneously seen numerous incidents of game-related racism, sexism, and misogyny. Gaming Sexism explains how these conflicting narratives can co-exist, as well as how women navigate their contradictions while gaming.

More recent work has explored how crunch (extensive, often unpaid overtime) practices persist in the video game industry, how collegiate esports programs responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, and how race and gender stereotypes permeate game-related media. Cote co-leads (with Dr. Maxwell Foxman) the Esports and Games Research (EGR) Lab.

Cote received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia in 2010 and completed her Ph.D. in Communication Studies at the University of Michigan in 2016. She previously worked at the University of Oregon. Her first book, Gaming Sexism: Gender and Identity in the Era of Casual Video Games, was published in 2020 by New York University Press. She has also published articles in edited book collections and journals including Journal of Communication, New Media & Society, Convergence, Games and Culture, and Feminist Media Studies.