Amir Zakaria Consulting Group | Gamification
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In recent years, gamification has become an important topic in a range of research disciplines (Almarshedi et al. 2015; Aparicio et al. 2019; Liu et al. 2013; Santhanam et al. 2016). Gamification refers to the use of game design elements in nongame contexts to influence individuals’ behaviors (Deterding et al. 2011) and attitudes, cultivate interest, and improve behavioral performance in entertainment systems (Huotari and Hamari 2017; Su and Cheng 2015; Suh et al. 2017). Unlike traditional extrinsic motivators, gamification design elements aim to arouse individuals’ intrinsic motivations and improve their behavioral performance (Hamari 2017; Kuo and Chuang 2016; Mekler et al. 2017; Xi and Hamari 2019). An increasing number of industries are adopting gamification methods to influence and improve individuals’ behaviors and performance (Baptista and Oliveira 2019), including education (Aparicio et al. 2019; Gonzalez ´ et al. 2016; Landers and Armstrong 2017), health management (Alahaiv ¨ ¨ al¨ a and Oinas-Kukkonen 2016; Groening and Binnewies 2019), e-commerce (Baptista and Oliveira 2017; Hamari 2015; Rocha Seixas et al. 2016; Yang et al. 2017), environmental conservation (Du et al. 2020), and crowdsourcing (Feng et al. 2018).

Goal setting is a key component of gamification design (Groening and Binnewies 2019). Thus, many scholars have defined gamification as the science of converting individuals’ behaviors into games to help them achieve their goals (Landers et al. 2017). Goal setting can stimulate the conversion of individuals’ needs into motivations and shift their behaviors in a certain direction (Locke and Latham 2002). When a goal is set, individuals can decide whether to accomplish the goal (Landers et al. 2017). Gamification can increase individuals’ behavioral motivations to achieve their set goals (Sailer et al. 2017). Previous studies have noted that achievements attained through gamification can serve as a proxy for external goal setting and facilitate individuals’ motivation and performance (Groening and Binnewies 2019). In the gamified environment, achievement is reflected through three principal mechanisms: scores, badges, and leaderboards (Hamari and Koivisto 2014; Landers et al. 2017; Sailer et al. 2014; Seaborn and Fels 2015).

In general, achievement incentives have two functions affecting individuals’ behaviors. First, they serve as a reward system (Sailer et al. 2014). Rewards are conferred when tasks are successfully completed, demonstrating users’ improvement and performance levels. Individuals can improve their executive motivation by earning rewards for achievement. Second, achievement incentives can serve as a feedback system. Individuals can complete tasks to obtain subgoal feedback, which is a common motivational strategy and behavioral modification method (Groening and Binnewies 2019).

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