Future Prosperity Panel

Carl Honoré

Journalist and author

Carl Honoré is an award-winning journalist and author. After graduating from Edinburgh University with a degree in modern history and Italian, he spent time working with street children in Brazil. He has covered Europe and South America forThe EconomistThe ObserverThe GuardianMiami HeraldHouston ChronicleTime Magazine and the National Post (Canada).

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Summary of essay

One of the challenges to boosting future prosperity is that all too often, the case for saving, which is vital to secure future prosperity, is couched in terms of doom and gloom – that we are not preparing for the future.

However there is a growing trend for designing games that change behaviour in the real world, by transforming a necessary evil into something that people actually want to do. It is not hard to imagine how gaming might make the jump into financial services.

Start with a smartphone app where savers can track their pension pot in real-time. Encourage healthy competition by forming mini savings leagues among friends, family or colleagues.

The qualities of gaming – competition, rewards and interactivity – can be used to make saving more engaging in a number of ways. Whilst gaming can't solve this challenge on its own, it has real potential to revolutionise financial services by making saving fun, cool and even a little irresistible for people of all ages.