During recent years modern ICT technologies have spawned two interwoven phenomena: gamification and crowdsourcing (CS) . The rapid diffusion of these technologies can be seen both in industry as well as in the academia. Today, multitude of different organizations employ CS as a way to outsource various tasks to be carried out by ‘the crowd’; a mass of people reachable through the internet. At the same time, business analysts have estimated that at least 50% of organizations have gamified some of their processes by 2015. As illustrated in the Figure, the body of literature on both CS and gamification has been rapidly growing. Moreover, these technologies appear together frequently: CS is one of the major application areas for gamification. Naturally, the main goals of CS in general are either cost savings or the possibility to innovate solutions that would be difficult to cultivate in-house. However, CS relies on the existence of a reserve of people that would be willing to take on tasks for free or for a minute monetary compensation. Therefore, CS tasks are increasingly gamified, that is, organizations attempt to make the activities more like playing a game in order to provide other motives for working than just the monetary compensation.
The 49th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, happening on January 5-8, 2016 at the Grnad Hyatt in Kauai, has a special section on “Gamification: Motivations, Effects and Analytics” as part of its Decision Analytics, Mobile Services, and Service Science track. Continue reading
Flow – a state of optimal experience characterized being fully focused and engaged in an activity – has been regarded as one of the most important psychological outcomes of gamification and games. It is most commonly understood to comprise of nine dimensions: challenge-skill-balance, clear goals, control, (immediate) feedback, autotelic experience,loss of self-consciousness, time transformation, concentration, and merging action-awareness. Currently, there are few studies investigating flow particularly in the context of gamification (See Hamari, Koivisto & Sarsa, 2014) and therefore there is little knowledge as to which dimensions of flow would be especially emergent in the context of flow. To this end we conducted a two-fold study: 1) We investigated the salience of the different dimensions of flow in gamification and 2) the psychometric properties of the DFS-2 flow measurement instrument. Continue reading
Gamification has become increasingly popular (Figure) and it is starting to establish itself as an independent vein of literature. However, gamification bears many similarities with other (somewhat scattered) conceptual developments. Perhaps the most analogous conceptual development is persuasive technology which, similarly to gamification, refers to technology being used to influence people’s psychological states and behavior. The differences are subtle; on the conceptual level, persuasive technology focuses more on social and communicative persuasion and attitude change (Fogg, 2002), whereas gamification centers more around invoking users’ (intrinsic) motivations (through gameful experiences and affordances – Huotari & Hamari, 2012). These similarities imply that research regarding the parallel developments most likely hold interesting findings also from the perspective of gamification. Continue reading
Everyone knows the blueprint of a common gamification attempt: badges, points and leaderboards for everyone (slightly exaggerating). Supposedly, a common belief is that there is a one-size-fits-all-solution that works for everyone. Consequently and probably with somewhat unwarranted expectations, popular sources (Gartner 2011; IEEE 2014) enthusiastically predict that organizations will increasingly adopt and implement gamification despite a lack of consistent body of empirical research studying the effects of gamification (see Hamari et al. 2014 for a literature reviews). Without knowledge of how different people react and perceive gamification, customizing, tailoring and targeting gamification solutions to different segments is difficult.
Understanding gamification and its effectiveness beyond anecdotal evidence and hype is evidently a pertinent practical issue as well as, increasingly, a scholarly pursuit. Regardless of the increasing amount of both industry chatter and scholarly articles, there still is a dearth of coherent understanding whether gamification works and under which circumstances. To address this gap, we reviewed empirical studies on gamification.