Massively Multiplayer Online Games as Information System: Implications for Organizational Learning

  • J. Tuomas Harviainen
  • Mikko Vesa
Conference paper
Part of the Translational Systems Sciences book series (TSS, volume 9)


In this chapter, we discuss the implications of the information systems structures of massively multiplayer online role-playing games to organizational learning that takes place within them or connected to them. The games consist of three interdependent information systems: an information retrieval system accessed by using game content as its keywords, a social system formed by the players, and an expanded system that extends outside of play proper, in the form of experience records like game blogs and videos. By developing their procedural literacies, players learn to analyze the systems and to compare their content and logics to the real world. In-game groups in turn use strategic practices to spread such learning organization-wide, in order to foster efficiency and better content access. By cleverly using briefing, debriefing, and strategizing procedures, real-world organizations too can then learn from these processes, as they free their members from individual learning traps and extend the lessons gained from voluntary gaming into absorptive and adaptive real-world practices.


Information seeking Information systems MMORPGs Organizational learning 



Parts of this chapter were produced with financial support from the University of Tampere and the FinCEAL+ project. The authors wish to thank Olle Sköld for his insightful comments during the preparation of this text.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of TampereTampereFinland
  2. 2.Laurea University of Applied SciencesEspooFinland
  3. 3.Hanken School of EconomicsHelsinkiFinland

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