Conference 2014

Gamification Water

Waterwise Annual Water Efficiency Conference 2014: Gamifying Water

September 16th & 17th

Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford

Over the past few years games have become a serious business. The traditional gaming industry is worth billions with some online games having more players than the population of many European countries. The average gamer is no longer a teenager playing World of Warcraft, it is a woman aged 35 to 55 playing Candy Crush Saga, and this means that games have become more social. Many games are now linked to social media, with an offer of Scrabble via Facebook being the new 'let's meet for coffee'. Many companies have known for ages that games are a good way of engaging customers, from the 'guess the number of sweets in the jar' of the Victorian shopkeeper to the 'invent a new flavour' competition from a well known crisp manufacturer. Games provide a new level of engagement, a sense of fun and shared space between retailer and customer that overcomes asymmetry and engenders trust.

Around ten years ago these games were put on a more formal footing with the coining of the term 'gamification' to describe the use of game techniques and theory in non-game situations. This new discipline has it’s own norms and techniques, with the building blocks being points, badges and leaderboards. There is a clear overlap between gamification, loyalty schemes and competitions but the main element is the interaction between players. In competitions the interaction is normally between customer and retailer, but with gamification there is competition between customers and the link with social media can intensify this resulting in the development of gamified communities.

So how does this work for the water sector? There has been little use of gamification for water. We believe that there is huge potential especially in areas like water efficiency and sewerage, where new metering and sensor technology could enable the allocation of points leading to badges and leaderboards for households or communities, and this could be communicated via social media and linked to incentives.

This conference brings together regulators, academics and practitioners to discuss the interaction of gamification, customers, utilities and ICT, and the potential for real projects to gamify the water sector. At the same time Waterwise and WRC are undertaking the world’s first trial based research project on gamification in the water sector. We hope you enjoy the conference and help shape the future of the application of these new approaches in the water sector.

Waterwise’s Annual Conference runs over 2 days (accommodation is available at Lady Margaret Hall).

Day 1 - 16th September

4pm start

 Day 1 kicks off late afternoon with a water efficiency exhibition and drinks reception, followed by a gala dinner.

Key Note Speaker - Lord Redesdale

Day 2 - 17th September

9am to 3.30pm

Day 2 is a full day of presentations, panels and discussions. Confirmed speakers and panelists include:

  • Sonia Brown, Chief Regulation Officer, Ofwat
  • Toby Willison, Director of Water, Land and Biodiversity, The Environment Agency
  • Emmanuelle Marcovitch, Head of the Marketing and Business Development Department, Eau de Paris
  • Toby Beresford, CEO, Leaderboarded
  • Jacob Tompkins, Managing Director, Waterwise
  • Carmen Snowdon, Customer Engagement Service Area Leader, WRC
  • Ben Earl, Water Efficiency Manager, Southern Water
  • Carla Denyer, Science Communicator & Co-founder of the Wind Farm Game
  • Lydia Lamvakeridou-Lyroudia, University of Exeter
  • Anna Kupfer, Water and Gamification Researcher, Bamburg University
  • Andrea Rizzoli, Smart H2O project, University of Applied Sciences of Southern Switzerland
  • Lilli Yang, ISSEWATUS FP7 project, Loughborough University
  • D. Scott Borden, Researcher, University of Exeter

We look forward to seeing you there – spaces are limited so book early to avoid disappointment.

Any questions, please contact or have a look at our Directions and Arrival Guide