Gamification, citizen science, and civic technologies: In search of the common good

Rejane Spitz, Clorisval Pereira Junior, Francisco Queiroz, Leonardo Cardarelli Leite, Peter Dam, Alexandre Cantini Rezende


In this paper, we discuss the importance of gameplay as a valuable tool in citizen sensing initiatives aimed at enabling creative collaboration and civic engagement. We present a review of selected citizen science and civic technologies’ projects highlighting an emerging culture of massive collaborative initiatives that make use of crowdsourcing, enabling users to voluntarily contribute their time, effort and resources towards scientific research and civic issues. Moreover, we discuss how these initiatives could benefit from the inclusion of gameplay in their interaction processes. For that matter, we present a gamified citizen sensing project we are devising for users to enter and retrieve information on commercially available food products which contain ingredients associated with an increased risk of cancer and other diseases. Through gameplay, we expect to crowdsource an open database of potentially unhealthy food products, raising awareness among consumers about the risks of certain artificial additives. Finally, we argue that the use of gamification processes can engage voluntary participation in initiatives aimed at citizenship – including those which demand complex and repetitive tasks for the collection of data – and call for a more ethical, critical, and meaningful use of these new potential technologies, and for greater awareness of our new civic responsibilities.

Keywords: interaction design, gamification, citizen sensing, mobile applications, artificial food additives.

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Licença Creative Commons
Esta obra está licenciada com uma Licença Creative Commons Atribuição 4.0 Internacional [atualizada em 11/11/2016]

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