Big brother is always watching. He also plays games 🙂
Governments are now getting in on some of that gamification action.
Canada – gEHmification
Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper is looking to gamification to motivate and engage its employees. He is specifically looking to improve motivation, engagement and problem solving in his workforce. Gamification has minimally been explored in the public sector of Canada beyond a few small applications, such as Pain Squad which you can read about here: https://www.gamesavvy.net/2015/01/26/gamification-best-case-pain-squad/
While they are looking into gamification for their workforce they are also examining the applications for its citizens. The Privy Council Office, the central organ of the government and the prime minister’s own department goes onto say “gamification may be a useful tool in engaging citizens. … Future citizen engagement initiatives undertaken by the public service could possibly make use of its techniques.”
Australia was looking to raise awareness for undervalued initiatives. So they created the game Run That Town. I wrote about the game here: Run That Town. A great example of using in game mechanics for real world results.
Sweden was looking for a way to motivate a certain behavior: speeding. They created a speed camera lottery which you can check out here: Speed Camera Lottery. Essentially they used a classic concept and partnered it with a great feedback for great results.
Ideas worth exploring
So governments are getting into gamification. They are looking to promote desired behaviours using and rewards. People intrinsically want to see their community and their country innovate and grow. Ideally my community would be clean, friendly and engaged but is this the case? I haven’t experienced the whole being a good neighbor thing just yet. In fact I barely even speak with my neighbors. So what could gamification do for my community?
I for one am all for motivating behaviors using game mechanics. How about points for throwing out trash you pick up off the ground? Equip the garbage cans with some NFC technology and slap an app onto everyone’s cell phone, grab some sponsors like Beavertail’s or even Tim Horton’s, and you have a system in place. Now I make it sound simple. I know it’s not. But these ideas are certainly worth exploring.
Feel free to share your ideas on how governments could use gamification to better your community in the comments below. You can also tweet us what you think on Twitter here @GameSavvy.