from Dr. Pascal Burgmer, Prof. Dr. Kristina Musholt& Dr. Dana Schneider
I know how you feel: Are narcissists as empathic as they claim to be??
by Peter Eric Heinze& Prof. Dr. Ramzi Fatfouta
Do we know each other? The problem of external perception
by Prof. Dr. Christian Tewes& Dr. Alexander Nicolai Wendt
Look, I give you the choice! – Socially mindful behavior as a sign of prosociality and perspective taking in everyday life
from Dr. Dorothee Mischkowski
Are we neutral observers? – Why we understand the same behavior differently with Linda and Kemal.
from Jana Mangels& Carsten Sander
Your sorrow is my sorrow? How we empathize with the emotions of others.
by Helena Hartmann, Dr. Markus Rutgen& Prof. Dr. Claus Lamm
How do children learn to understand others and how can parents support them??
From Dr. Tobias Schuwerk
I’m just here to save the world: Simply playing to protect the environment!
- by Sophie Ehrlicher& Janet Wessler
Environmental protection is important to you? They would like to contribute to sustainability? The will is there, but it is often difficult to put it into practice in everyday life. Why a sustainability game helps when promoting awareness or imparting knowledge reaches its limits.
Actually, you wanted to save more energy and leave the car more often. Sounds easy, doesn’t it? I n everyday life, it often turns out that we are concerned about the environment, but the implementation of environmentally protective actions is then more difficult than expected, and we return to old behavior patterns after a short time .
In their search for an effective method of behavior change, Michael Ro of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his team developed a social game to promote sustainability and investigated whether environmentally friendly behavior can be promoted over the long term through game-based elements.
The "Cool Choices " game consisted of a wide range of action k arts that described specific actions ( z. B. " riding a bike to work " or " turning off unused appliances " ) . The researchers divided 220 study participants into seven teams, all of whom were given the task of collecting as many points as possible by playing the cards. Whenever a participant selected one of the cards and performed the environmentally friendly action, he or she sent the card with signature to the researchers inside and was credited points for his or her own team on a public ranking list. Some of the cards could be played more than once, others (e.g., "I don’t feel loved") could be played more than once. B. " get rid of a second refrigerator " ) only once. Bonus points were awarded for sending in photos that showed participants performing the act . At the end of the activity, the winning team received a sum of money to donate to charity.
In order to evaluate the success of the intervention, the participants’ private electricity use was documented on the basis of their electricity bills ( six months before and six months after the intervention ) and compared with the use of residents of the same region ( control group /non-gamers ). T he participants saved about 4%, significantly more energy than the control group, and maintained this advantage in the long term after completing the game. Interestingly, the participants who reduced consumption the most were those who had previously consumed the most energy .
Why is the game-based intervention so effective in contrast to awareness raising or knowledge transfer?? An important point is that people could score points in teams. Motivation was high to be a good team member and compete with other teams for small rewards . The actions were publicly visible to the other participants . In addition, it was particularly easy for the players to act in an environmentally friendly way because the cards gave them concrete instructions on how to perform an action, and the repeated execution of these instructions led to the formation of everyday habits . The participants always retained the freedom to decide which card they wanted to play and – associated with this – which possible environmental action they wanted to take .
The mere knowledge or will to change behavior is often not enough to incorporate pro-environmental behaviors into everyday life . S pie l-based interventions seem promising here for adopting habits of action in everyday life . Let’s play !
Ro, M., Brewer, M., Kuntz, K., Shukla , R., & Bensch, I. (2017). Making Cool Choices for sustainability: Testing the effectiveness of a game-based approach to promoting pro-environmental behaviors. Journal of Environmental Psychology , 53, 20-30.