Gamification approaches for education and engagement on pro-environmental behaviors: searching for best practices

Tania Ouariachi Peralta (First author), Wim Elving, Chih-Yen Li

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Education is a key factor to respond to the threat of climate change, increasing not only knowledge but also encouraging changes in attitudes and behaviors to adopt sustainable
lifestyles. Scholars and practitioners in the field of education call for innovative ways of engaging youth—a reason why gamification has gained more attention in recent years. This paper aims at
exploring the role of gamification in aecting pro-environmental behavioral change and searching for best practices for educational purposes. For that aim, pro-environmental gamification platforms are identified and analyzed by applying two dierent frameworks: the Octalysis Framework and the Climate Change Engagement through Games Framework. After scanning 181 cases, a final sample of six is analyzed and two of them are selected as best practices with higher potential to engage users in
pro-environmental behavioral change: SaveOhno and JouleBug. Meaning, ownership, and social influence, as well as achievability, challenge, and credibility, are seen as core elements that can
increase the success of gamification platforms. In conclusion, the more attributes are enclosed in the gamification design, the stronger physical and mental connections it builds up with participants.
Insights from this study can help educators to select best practices and gamification designers to better influence behavioral change through game mechanics.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jun 2020


  • gamification
  • games
  • behavior change
  • education
  • engagement
  • motivation
  • climate change


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