MINDSPACE – Influencing Behaviour

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Sometimes you come across stuff that you really wish you had come up with, but it is so good that shareing it is much better than trying to develop your own version!

One such idea is that of MINDSPACE.

In 2010 the British Government commisioned research into influencing behaviour through policy. What they produced was a report that we in gamification should find really useful – all revolving around this MINDSPACE acronym.

  • Messenger: we are heavily influenced by who communicates information
  • Incentives: our responses to incentives are shaped by predictable mental shortcuts, such as strongly avoiding losses
  • Norms: we are strongly influenced by what others do
  • Defaults: we ‘go with the flow’ of pre-set options
  • Salience: our attention is drawn to what is novel and seems relevant to us
  • Priming: our acts are often influenced by sub-conscious cues
  • Affect: our emotional associations can powerfully shape our actions
  • Commitments: we seek to be consistent with our public promises, and reciprocate acts
  • Ego: we act in ways that make us feel better about ourselves

Rather brilliantly, they released all the info in a couple of reports. So follow these links for loads more info, it is really good stuff (if a little worrying that the government are look at how to control us this way…).


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Andrzej Marczewski
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Gamification thought leader and evangelist, I love to write about it, talk about it and bore people to death with it! If you really want to get to know me, check out the About page.

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