Ximeng Fang

  Wednesday, 22nd February 2023

  14:30 - 15:30

   Butler Room - Nuffield College

   The Playful Way to Pro-Environmental Behaviour: A Field Experiment on Edutainment Through Video Games


Large-scale behavioural and social change to address the challenge of climate change may be facilitated by novel, behaviourally informed communication and education tools. In this project, we test the potential of “edutainment” through video games for fostering pro-environmental attitudes and behaviour. Partnering with Sony Interactive Entertainment, we are developing a video game that includes educational elements regarding sustainable behaviour – with a focus on food-related choices. Our plan is to recruit a sample of active gamers in the U.S. and/or the UK and incentivize them to play our game. Participants will be randomized to receive access to one of five different game versions. Story, world, and gameplay will stay largely the same in all versions, but we exogenously vary the presence of environmental issues in the game, as well the type of feedback that players receive about their in-game actions – in particular, feedback may be either individual-centred or social in nature. Outcome variables will be elicited in a post-intervention survey and include measures of knowledge and attitudes regarding climate change and sustainable food choices, as well as an incentive-compatible experimental online supermarket to assess whether playing the game influences behaviour in real-world choice contexts.