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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

On Serious Gamification

Podcast on the evolution of serious gamification.   We used it to some extent in the enterprise, but never to my satisfaction.  It requires a change in business user behavior.  There is much opportunity here.


‘For the Win’ authors Kevin Werbach and Dan Hunter discuss the revised and updated edition of their book and how gamification has changed the way we work toward goals.

The story of gamification isn’t fun and games. It’s serious.

Authors Kevin Werbach and Dan Hunter have been at the forefront of the development of gamification tools in business. In a revised and updated edition of their book, For the Win: The Power of Gamification and Game Thinking in Business, Education, Government, and Social Impact, they explain that when used carefully and thoughtfully, gamification produces great outcomes for users, in ways that are hard to replicate through other methods. Other times, companies misuse the “guided missile” of gamification to have people work and do things in ways that are against their self-interest.

The authors recently sat down with Brett LoGiurato, senior editor at Wharton School Press, to discuss their revised and updated book.

An edited transcript of the conversation follows:

Brett LoGiurato: I wanted to talk first about your initial interest in gamification and what drew you together. I understand it started as a shared interest in World of Warcraft, so how did you develop it from there?

Kevin Werbach: It was a shared interest in games and the power of games. We were originally both faculty at Wharton, and we were both studying what was then called “cyberspace”—virtual worlds. Dan actually did this work before I did, but he and others started looking at virtual worlds of games and comparing that to the virtual world that was getting built with the internet in cyberspace. I found that incredibly fascinating, and I found Dan to be a really brilliant guy, as well. So we became friends, and one of the things that we did was with a group of researchers, journalists and others who studied games in virtual worlds — we got together and started playing a game, World of Warcraft, back when it originally launched, now 15-plus years ago.

That experience of seeing what it was actually like in this incredibly sophisticated virtual world really further kindled our interest. Then when this phenomenon of gamification started to develop a couple of years later, people were saying, “We can learn from games and take insights from developing effective games and apply that to business and apply that to the things in the real world that we are studying.” I think that’s really the point where both of us jumped and said, “Yes, we really think this is something significant, and we can contribute to the understanding.”  ....  '

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