The Gamification of Banking

40 Pages Posted: 14 Sep 2023 Last revised: 26 Sep 2023

See all articles by Colleen Baker

Colleen Baker

University of Oklahoma - Michael F. Price College of Business

Christopher K. Odinet

University of Iowa - College of Law

Date Written: September 11, 2023


Gamification is coming to banking. This phenomenon is already gaining ground in advertising, healthcare, manufacturing, and, more recently, with the GameStop and AMC meme stock saga in securities trading. The idea behind gamification is to make transactions seem fun, playful, and even casino-like in order to elicit habit-forming, addictive-like effects with consumers. We argue that the rise of financial technology (fintech) firms and their ever-growing business relationships with incumbent financial institutions has created the necessary conditions for gamification to take hold in the banking sector. In order to explore this observation, we undertake a study of current examples of banking gamification and create a novel taxonomy of instances where fintech firms and banks offer financial products and services using business models that rely upon on high levels of customers, transaction activity and engagement, and that frequently use the power of social media and online communities. Through our discussion of the nascent gamification of banking, we also explore the tension between consumer protection and various regulatory approaches when it comes to thinking about how to regulate the gamification in the banking sector. Lastly, we theorize banking gamification as coming in three distinct waves, with the final, yet-to-be realized wave being the advent of one-stop-shop, mega financial platforms. We conclude the paper by offering some thoughts on the benefits and costs of gamification in banking.

Keywords: banking, gamification, platforms, consumer protection, GameStop, fintech, financial technology, financial regulation, finreg, cloud, data, privacy

Suggested Citation

Baker, Colleen M. and Odinet, Christopher K., The Gamification of Banking (September 11, 2023). University of Illinois Law Review (2024, Forthcoming), U Iowa Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2023-28, Available at SSRN:

Colleen M. Baker

University of Oklahoma - Michael F. Price College of Business ( email )

307 West Brooks
Norman, OK 73019-4004
United States

Christopher K. Odinet (Contact Author)

University of Iowa - College of Law ( email )

130 Byington Road
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States

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