Waterloo’s Stratford Campus delves into research behind game-inspired digital sector

WATERLOO, Ont. (Wednesday, May 8, 2013) – The University of Waterloo Stratford Campus began accepting submissions from presenters today for an international conference on gamification – the term for using game design in a range of tasks to make them more fun, engaging and motivating.

The explosion of gamification – fueled by projections that half of all companies will use the technology by 2015 – is spawning an entirely new sector in digital media and beyond. As this new sector expands, the University of Waterloo has become a leader in gamification research.

“Gamification 2013 allows us to showcase the depth of research that the University of Waterloo is doing in this field which will become the foundation for the future of gamification,” said Neil Randall, Director of the Games Institute at Waterloo. “Gamification has become a bit of a trend – so many conferences have focused on the business side of the industry. We’ve barely scratched the surface of gamification research, so to offer an academic approach, partnered with industry, is unique and really allows us to look at where this new business sector can go.”

This conference will showcase current academic research in gamification opening the door for discussion around the growth of the gamification industry. The conference will cover a range of academic and industry research specifically aligned to expand the effective implementation of gamification in business, health, education, and entertainment.

U.S. analysts, Gertner Inc., estimate that nearly three-quarters of large corporations will incorporate gamification by next year, while others predict it could become a billion-dollar industry. Yet while many people are applying gamification, few are actually researching it. The Stratford campus is home to Waterloo’s gamification hub, designed to bring together researchers and industry partners to explore how to use game thinking to get results.

“Gamification has become so prolific with so much emphasis on the business aspects we are proud to host a conference that comes from a different perspective,” said Ginny Dybenko, executive director of the Stratford campus. “The future of this sector holds great potential and it is thrilling to think that the University of Waterloo is leading the thinking and research into new ideas and opportunities could be born out of Gamification 2013 conference sessions.”

People interested in presenting can submit their papers for participation, including research projects, gamification successes and failures, unanswered question about gamification, gamification metrics and processes, and methods of gamification commercialization. Presentations at Gamification 2013 can be of research paper and industry submissions.

Gamification 2013, in cooperation with the Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interation (SIGCHI) of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) will be hosted by the University of Waterloo Stratford Campus on October 2-4, 2013. It is supported by academic and industry partners including, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, the Association for Computing Machinery, the Games Institute, Gamer Lab, GRAND and IMMERSe.

Registration opens June 1. Space is limited. For more details, please visit https://uwaterloo.ca/gamification.


About Waterloo Stratford Campus
The University of Waterloo Stratford Campus www.stratfordcampus.uwaterloo.ca is focused on undergraduate, graduate and executive education programs, research, commercialization and community outreach. This collaborative, strategic partnership between the City of Stratford and the University of Waterloo brings students, leading researchers, businesses and entrepreneurs together to create, examine and commercialize opportunities in the digital media space. The campus leads an evolution in learning and career preparation. Students are immersed in a rich, technology driven environment where theory and practice, science and commerce, creativity and innovation merge to forward digital media.

About the University of Waterloo
In just half a century, the University of Waterloo, located at the heart of Canada’s technology hub, has become one of Canada’s leading comprehensive universities with 35,000 full- and part-time students in undergraduate and graduate programs. Waterloo, as home to the world’s largest post-secondary co-operative education program, embraces its connections to the world and encourages enterprising partnerships in learning, research and discovery. In the next decade, the university is committed to building a better future for Canada and the world by championing innovation and collaboration to create solutions relevant to the needs of today and tomorrow. For more information about Waterloo, please visit www.uwaterloo.ca

Media Contacts:

Pamela Smyth
University of Waterloo

Nick Manning
University of Waterloo