'Gamify It' launch hackathons to solve societal issues

(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/Yuri_Arcurs)

A bunch of talented professionals called 'Gamification World' aim to solve societal issues around the world through making solutions more interesting via the medium of gaming. Gamification, of course, is adding gaming elements to an otherwise boring task - unfortunately that match of Call of Duty you play in your spare time isn't going to solve real-world problems. 

The group has launched a series of 'Gamify It' hackathons to help advance their mission, and right now there is one taking place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia which hopes to bring about such needed change in a struggling region. 

Over the coming days, 35 developers from 12 countries across Africa - Botswana, Cameroon, Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Togo and Zimbabwe - will come together in the pursuit of gamified apps which provide helpful solutions to complicated challenges such as green energy and emergency and disaster management. 

It is being organised by eLearning Africa, GIZ, an innovation hub in Addis Ababa called IceAddis, and a large focus will be placed on e-learning and vocational training to help provide individuals with the skills they need to succeed. Participants will display their solutions to the 1,200 attendees at the eLearning Africa Conference on the 20th May. 

eLearning Africa says the event will be looking for answers to questions such as; 

  • Is it possible to achieve a measurable impact towards sustainable development through fun and engagement? 
  • Do gamified learning interventions potentially offer a bigger impact than traditional blended learning scenarios or knowledge management systems? 
  • What incentives beyond points, badges or leader boards could be applied in this specific context and what could they look like? 

The winning team will be invited to Germany for OEB in December 2015 - a global, cross-sector conference on tech-supported learning. 

Do you think gamification can have an impact on societal issues? Let us know in the comments.


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