Yu-kai Chou

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Yu-kai Chou
Chou speaking at TEDx Talks
Born (1986-05-09) May 9, 1986 (age 38)
Occupation(s)Entrepreneur, Author, Lecturer, Consultant, Gamification Designer

Yu-kai Chou (Chinese: 周郁凱; born May 9, 1986) is a Taiwanese-American entrepreneur, author, speaker, business consultant, and experience designer. He is one of the earliest pioneers in the industry of gamification.[1] He has been a regular keynote speaker lecturer on Gamification at organizations like TEDx Lausanne,[2] Stanford University,[3] Harvard University, Google, Tesla, Lego, Huawei, Uber, Boston Consulting Group, among others.[4] Chou is the creator of the Octalysis Framework and the Founder/CEO of the consultancy The Octalysis Group [5] and the mentorship education platform Octalysis Prime.[6]

Early life and education[edit]

Chou was born in Taipei, Taiwan. Because of his father's work as a diplomat for the Taiwanese government, he grew up in Taiwan, South Africa, and the United States. He received his undergraduate degree Bachelor of Arts in Economics/International Area Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles (commonly known as UCLA) in 2007.[7]


2003, Chou started his research on gamification and helped pioneer the gamification industry. Chou started his first company, The FD Network, which connected professionals of various industries together to help each other through a gamified system.[8]

2007, Chou co-founded Future Delivery, LLC., a company that focuses on gamified productivity and professional development. Its flagship project FDCareer, was rated on Mashable as one of the “Top 10 Social Networks for Generation-Y” in 2009.[9]

2009, Chou co-founded Viralogy, Inc., a gamified social media rank aiming to become a leaderboard of the top online influencers. It later launched the gamified restaurant and retail loyalty program RewardMe.[10]

2012, Chou stepped down as CEO of Viralogy, Inc., and published his Octalysis gamification framework on his blog to analyze and build strategies around the various systems to increase motivation and engagement. It was widely received, and his work was organically translated into over 16 languages within a year. Chou then started to speak across the globe and teach his Octalysis Framework.

2015 The Octalysis Framework was published in Actionable Gamification: Beyond Points, Badges, and Leaderboard. The book has also been published in Taiwan, South Korea, China.[11]

2016, Chou co-founded The Octalysis Group. The Octalysis Group is a premium design and consulting firm specializing in gamification and behavioral design using the Octalysis Framework. The firm served globally recognized companies like Porsche, Uber, Volkswagen, Microsoft, AIG Japan, Lego, Huawei, eBay, CapitalOne, Avon, Fidelity Investments, among others[12]

2018, Yu-kai Chou was appointed Chief Experience Officer for Toronto-based Decentral, helping Ethereum Cofounder Anthony Di Iorio improve experiences for the cryptocurrency wallet Jaxx Liberty.[13]

2018, Chou also launched Octalysis Prime, a gamified education and mentorship platform to pass on his knowledge in gamification, entrepreneurship, productivity and behavioral science to subscribed members.[14]

In 2021, Yu-kai Chou was appointed Head of Digital Commerce and Head of Creative Labs for HTC in Taiwan. He helped improve HTC's digital presence and the launching of VR Headsets such as the VIVE Focus 3 and the VIVE Flow.[15][16]

Global Influence[edit]

In 2022, Chou was honored with the title of a Knight by His Imperial Highness King Yi Seok, the only remaining heir living in Korea to the Joseon dynasty throne which ruled over the country for five centuries. The Imperial Family of Korea is the ruling family of the Joseon and Korean Empire that was founded by King Seong-gye Lee in July 1392. In 2023, Chou was promoted to the title of Duke by His Imperial Highness King Andrew Lee. [17][18]

Awards and recognitions[edit]

Rated #1 among the “Gamification Gurus Power 100” by RISE in 2015[19]

“Gamification Guru of the Year” Award in 2014, 2015 and 2017 by the World Gamification Congress[20]

Rated “#1 Industry Project in Gamification” in 2017 by the Gamification Europe Conference[21]

“Gamification Guru of the Year” in 2017 by the Gamification Europe Conference.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Chou is an avid fan of video games since his childhood in South Africa. He also coached chess for K-12 students. [citation needed] Yu-kai converted to Christianity from Atheism in 2002 and has publicly declared his faith through his work.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Angelovska, Nina (2019). "Gamification Trends For 2019: Making Room For Game-Elements In Politics". Forbes. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  2. ^ "Gamification to improve our world: Yu-kai Chou at TEDxLausanne". TEDx Talks. 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  3. ^ "Entrepreneurship in Asian High-Tech Industries - Yu-kai Chou?". Stanford University. 2023. Retrieved 3 October 2023.
  4. ^ "HarvardXR". News Net Media. 2023. Retrieved 23 May 2023.
  5. ^ "What is Gamification? And what is not". The Octalysis Group. 2023. Retrieved 23 May 2023.
  6. ^ "Who is Yu-kai Chou?". Yukai Chou Website. 2016. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  7. ^ "Entrepreneurship in Asian High-Tech Industries - Yu-kai Chou?". Stanford University. 2023. Retrieved 3 October 2023.
  8. ^ "Yu-kai Chou, Gamification Expert, Entrepreneur, and Follower of Christ". Finding God in Silicon Valley. 1 April 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  9. ^ Schawbel, Dan (2009). "The Top 10 Social Networks for Generation-Y". Mashable. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  10. ^ "RewardMe". 2009. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  11. ^ Rogan, Kelly (2017). "Why Companies Need Gamification & Behavioral Design: Yu-Kai Chou President At The Octalysis Group". Social&Loyal. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  12. ^ Chou, Yu-Kai (2015). Actionable Gamification. Createspace Independent Publishing Platform. ISBN 9781511744041. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  13. ^ Decentral (2018). "Decentral Appoints Gamification Pioneer Yu-kai Chou as Chief Experience Officer Visionary to Lead Gamification of Jaxx Liberty Platform". PRNewswire. Retrieved 11 November 2021.
  14. ^ Yu-kai Chou (2017). "Octalysis Prime - the Gamified Learning Journey". Kickstarter. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  15. ^ Yale School of Management (2021). "The Motivating Power of Games". Yale.edu. Retrieved 11 November 2021.
  16. ^ HTC (2021). "HTC VIVE CELEBRATES TOP 100 GLOBAL VR SOCIAL INFLUENCERS OF 2021". HTC. Retrieved 11 November 2021.
  17. ^ "Imperial Family of Korea". The Imperial Family of Korea. Retrieved 3 April 2023.
  18. ^ "IAndrew Lee Named New Korean Crown Prince". Cision PR Newswire. Retrieved 3 March 2022.
  19. ^ Beresford, Toby (2015). "Leaderboard - Gamification Gurus Power 100 - August 2015 - Gamification Guru of the Year award". www.rise.global. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  20. ^ "Won "Gamification Guru of the Year" Award at the Gamification World Congress". 2015. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  21. ^ "Awards – gamification-europe.com". Gamification Europe. 2017. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  22. ^ "Awards – gamification-europe.com". Gamification Europe. 2017. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  23. ^ "Yu-kai Chou, Gamification Expert, Entrepreneur, and Follower of Christ". Finding God in Silicon Valley. 1 April 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2019.