Gaming to benefit research
Researchers plan to use an online game to find out what motivates people’s mobility behavior. The findings will be used for new informational offers.
Today, there’s no longer any doubt that using game-like elements to convey knowledge or complete tasks has a motivating effect. Whether for learning vocabulary or on the job: Gamification is being implemented more and more frequently for the purpose of raising motivation. When correctly applied, gamification is much more than just collecting points or badges. Placing difficult content and boring or even unpleasant tasks in a playful context makes it a lot more fun to deal with them. However, there are still only very few scientifically based findings regarding how such mechanisms function.
Anyone interested in gaming to benefit research can participate until March 31, 2015 at Crossing Borders.
This is where a game comes in that was developed in connection with a research project called “Crossing Borders”. The project, which is funded by the Austrian government’s Climate and Energy Fund, concerns, among other things, an issue that is just as complex as it is important: how to change people’s mobility behavior. Increasing urbanization and the associated rise in traffic volumes needs to be dealt with at several different levels. In addition to making traffic management more intelligent and lowering the emissions of means of transport, this also involves changing individual behaviors. This is where gamification comes into play. To be able to develop new apps and other informational products that appeal to people’s gaming instincts, the first step is to obtain answers to fundamental questions on how these types of elements function.
Surveys designed as a game
The Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT) and Konstantin Mitgutsch from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed a survey in the form of an online game to answer these questions. The survey involves nine challenges in which problems are solved just like in traditional puzzle games. Points are awarded, high scorer lists are kept and prizes given. For getting through all nine challenges, users receive 5 EUR in Amazon credit or they can make a donation in that amount to Doctors Without Borders. Moreover, two tablets (one Apple iPad and one Samsung Galaxy Note) are being raffled off.
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