Sustainable Point Card Management Game


  • Ryoju Hamada
  • Tomomi Kaneko


"Point Cards have been commonly used worldwide in recent decades. There are many systems involving a lot of functions by utilizing cutting-edge ICT innovations. Those systems are usually exclusive to other e-commerce systems, so the operators must compete aggressively to increase their share. The competition is often overheated. For instance, we can see too harsh point campaigns beyond the reasonable possible range. Consumers crowd to gather instant benefits but often lack a long-term perspective. The existence of people interested only in points heats endless matches among cashless transaction systems. After the game, only a few winners' companies remain. They will terminate the point campaign. Furthermore, they will revise their rules to collect the cost consumed for the previous meaningless fights from the customers already captured in the specified system. To avoid such tragedy, people should learn the mechanism of a cashless transaction system to ensure service providers' fair competition and benefits. However, such systems are pretty complex ICT systems quite hard to grasp for ordinary people.
To resolve such problems, the authors developed the point card management game to support the learning point system experientially. In the first stage, a player works as an individual shop that provides points independently. In the second stage, players experience the joint point campaign with neighbouring shops to increase new and regular customers. When a shop offers points to customers, they must deposit the same money to the service provider. When the customer returns and consumes points at the shop, the shop can get a refund from the operator while paying a commission for the second transaction. In the third stage, other players, like a local government, step into the game. They subsidize the participants and sometimes host an event to increase the transaction. Throughout the process, the player can learn the outline of the point system, calculation, operation, and campaign. The player can determine the fair competition of cashless transaction systems and be able to discover the path to encourage sustainable E-commerce."