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The new engagement game: the role of gamification in scholarly publishing

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Gamification – the application of game mechanics to solve problems and engage users – is gathering significant momentum in the wider business world, and there are many ways in which it could benefit librarians, academic publishers, and learned societies. At its core, gamification is a way of tapping into motivational forces to increase individual investment in a system, process, or resource; applied correctly, these mechanics could be used to increase engagement with a publisher's back catalogue, drive society members to explore the value their membership offers, and encourage students to connect with on-campus learning resources. Gamification can help satisfy both business and audience objectives, but frameworks have to be carefully designed to avoid some of the common pitfalls that such systems face. Although there are few examples of gamification at work in the learned publishing sector, those who are willing to explore, experiment, and iterate on solutions will be better placed to meet the needs of the increasing 'digital native' student and academic population.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: October 1, 2013

More about this publication?
  • Editor in Chief: Pippa Smart
    North American Editor: Judy Luther

    Learned Publishing is the journal of the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers, published in collaboration with the Society for Scholarly Publishing. The journal is published quarterly in January/April/July/October.

    Learned Publishing articles are available free online to members of ALPSP and SSP.
    ALPSP members: log in to If you do not have a password contact
    SSP members: log in to the Member Center using your membership username and password. Further information

    Learned Publishing will be moving to Wiley-Blackwell as of January 1, 2016. Please contact the publisher at for information on how to continue access to this title.

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