Gamification and human-machine interaction: a synthesis

By Cathie Marache-Francisco, Éric Brangier

Gamification deals with new human-machine interaction design practices. It consists of elements which are inspired from videogames, with the hope that this relationship which is designed to be more hedonic, engaging and motivating, will lead to positive changes within human-machine interactions, especially when applied to work practices and productivity matters. In this article, we present a synthesis of that notion, paralleled with ergonomics, concerning its definition and its design. We first draw a definition from the gamification literature. It can be considered as the use of game elements in generally digital non-gaming systems which are adapted to the users’ profiles in order to generate motivation and engagement, with a focus on pleasurable experiences, even fun ones. We also mention the context of emergence of gamification. We then define and illustrate gamification design. Afterwards, this paper highlights critical factors which could help the ergonomist to participate in the design of efficient and satisfactory gamified systems. We then broaden this discussion to analyze the core meaning of gamification at work: the promise of flourishing and engagement through innovative interactions, as well as the production of coopetitive knowledge.


  • gamification
  • user experience
  • persuasive technology
  • emotional design
  • organizational change
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