Playing (with) Democracy: A Review of Gamified Participation Approaches

Sarah-Kristin Thiel, Michaela Reisinger, Kathrin Röderer, Peter Fröhlich in the Journal of Democracy and Open Government: “Albeit a wide range of e-participation platforms being already available, the level of public participation remains low. Governments around the world as well as academia are currently exploring new ways to design participation methods that are more engaging to use and will foster participation. One of the strategies is gamification. By adding game elements to e-participation platforms it is hoped to motivate for citizens to engage. This paper reviewed a large number of e-participation platforms, seeking to provide an overview of the current state of the art of so-called gamified participation initiatives. Our results show that while about half of the review projects can be categorized as game-related, only a small amount employs gamification. Moreover, current gamified participation initiatives seem to focus on reward-based gamification, a strategy which is said to come with risks. In this paper we further provide recommendations for future gamified participation projects….(More)”