Almost half of surveyed employees at Paradox Interactive, the video game developer and publisher behind popular strategy games likes Crusader Kings, Hearts of Iron, and Europa Universalis, say they’ve experienced bullying and discrimination. This comes after the resignation of Paradox CEO Ebba Ljungerud, who stepped down due to differing views on the company’s business strategy. Former CEO Fredrik Wester, who has returned to take Ljungerud’s place, claims there’s no connection between this resignation and these recent accusations.
A leaked union survey conducted in August, which spoke to 133 of the company’s approximately 400 employees, was reported by Swedish outlet Breakit (via Kotaku). This survey found almost half (44%) of Paradox Interactive’s employees who participated to have experienced mistreatment and abusive behavior in a “culture of silence” workplace. While the report states that a third of male employees have experienced mistreatment, 69% of female employees who took part said that they experienced abuse and discrimination during their time with the studio, with almost no employees saying they felt as though their issues were resolved.
In response to the report, Paradox has acknowledged the news and revealed that it will be conducting its own survey amongst staff. The company is also in the process of bringing an external company to audit their report processes and to handle cases of discrimination and harassment. Paradox’s communications manager, Loïc Fontaine, has also told the company’s employees that Paradox will take action based on both the union’s survey and the external audit.