A Method for Developing a Game-Enhanced Tool Targeting Consumer Engagement in Demand Response Mechanisms
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This work focuses on enhancing consumer engagement in demand response mechanisms through the employment of gamification techniques. Demand response mechanisms are employed by electricity suppliers, other market parties, and transmission and distribution system operators as options for market optimisation, balancing supply and demand, and ensuring system security. Gamification is the use of game design elements in non-game contexts, and the use of game principles in the design of certain systems to enhance engagement with these systems and make the interaction more motivating. The development of flexibility mechanisms at the demand-side is considered a key aspect for an effective energy transition, which requires the active participation and empowerment of consumers in the energy system. However, a significant barrier to realise the full flexibility potential is insufficient consumer engagement and awareness regarding energy usage. Serious games, and gamification, can effectively empower consumers by enhancement of engagement and stimulation of collaboration between them. The goal is to enable a playful interaction between technology, such as smart metering systems, energy management systems and smart appliances, and consumers that will result in higher engagement in demand response. An overview of demand response is provided, and the linkage is made between retail markets, markets at the wholesale level and ancillary services. The role of gamification techniques is discussed based on literature review, focusing on strategies to increase consumer engagement in demand response mechanisms. A user-centred, iterative design method is proposed for the development of a game-enhanced tool in which also collaboration between players can be stimulated, whereas the impact of applying the game-enhanced tool on consumer engagement can be empirically verified.
KeywordsDemand side management Demand response Consumer engagement Gamification Serious games Tool design method
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