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The Gamification of Work

The Use of Games in the Workplace

Emmanuelle Savignac, EHESS, France

ISBN: 9781786301239

Publication Date: January 2017   Hardback   198 pp.

120 USD

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Working organizations regularly use games for their training activities or communications in the workplace. The increasing use of serious games by businesses cannot obscure the use, for several decades, of “situation” games: role-playing, simulation and “scenarios” that support many training, learning, awareness and teambuilding sessions in companies. This use of social games, constantly renewed by management, invites the question of what businesses and their leaders find in these games that could be useful to work and production, as play and work are traditionally opposed.
Based on the observation of role playing and simulation, this book seeks to analyze the effectiveness of games in a professional context. Exploring several theories of games, it shows how the well-known concepts – in social sciences and humanities – of frame, role or fiction can help us to rethink what the gamification of work could be and how it could operate.


1. Prelude: Fun, Play, Game, Ludus… A Survey of Game Theories.
2. Games in Business.
3. Performativity of the Game : Games and the Structuring of Experience.

About the Authors

Emmanuelle Savignac is an anthropologist, a graduate of EHESS, a researcher at Cerlis and a lecturer at the New Sorbonne. After studying the effects of “fun management” in start-ups, she is now studying the use of play and gamification in companies.


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