DHL is trying out a new program called bring.Buddy where regular people can pick up and deliver packages along their daily route that they’d be traveling anyway. In return, the recruits earn free train tickets, coupons and carbon offset credits. And, of course, badges. The goal is to reduce costs and carbon emissions within dense urban environments.
It’s only a pilot test based on an idea pitched by design students at the Universitat Potsdam, but it’ll be very interesting to see what happens when you put it out in the real world. For instance, how will they deal with the inevitable flaking out or amateurs accidentally leaving a package somewhere? If you make it enough of a game, will people play? Are the rewards, both material and social, coupled with the risk of social sanction within your local community, enough to reinforce good behavior? Would this ever work in the USA?City dwellers enlisted & rewarded for delivering DHL packages [springwise]
bring.BUDDY at the Expo 2010 in Shanghai [D-School Blog] (Thanks to Bec!)