Exploring the potential of gamification to finance nature conservation: a new report

Biodiversity loss is one of the world’s most immediate and critical challenges and at the same time it is becoming increasingly difficult to build interest in and fundraise for nature conservation. The latest estimate of the gap between what is needed to be spent to conserve nature and what is actually spent (the ‘conservation gap’) is over USD 800 billion per year. 

A new report by the Luc Hoffmann Institute – Using Gamification in Nature Conservation – explores how storytelling and gamification can derive value from, and for, wildlife. It highlights some current and past initiatives, theories and lessons learned from these efforts. The report not only lays out the current landscape, but also aims to spark people’s imagination to act on an increasingly urgent need.

‘’Finding the value that people will pay for is the holy grail of 21st-century conservation. The conservation community is sitting on a massive asset – charismatic species, wildplaces and nature stories – that could provide massive value with the right model’’, says Adrian Dellecker, Head of Strategy and Development at the Luc Hoffmann Institute. ‘’This report seeks to stimulate innovation, encourage entrepreneurs, and convince states and corporations that by using available technology, we can meaningfully address the painful financial gap in global conservation efforts and reconnect humans with nature. This report is not an end in itself: it must result in a flurry of innovation from a new generation of entrepreneurs.’’

This report begins with an overview of gamification, followed by an exploration of gamified marketplaces as alternatives for donations. Experts in a range of fields were interviewed and eleven case studies were examined, ranging from blockchain games to gamified marketplaces. In conclusion, the report recommends that gamification should be considered as one solution in a wide suite of methods to revolutionise nature conservation funding.

The authors of Using gamification in nature conservation are PentaQuest, independent gamification experts and Sasha Sebright, an MPhil candidate at the University of Cambridge who has been working closely with the institute’s Gamifying Nature Conservation project team.

To learn more about the Luc Hoffmann Institute’s work on gamification techniques and conservation please visit Gamifying Nature Conservation