Climate action made simple and rewarding.



Bachelor Thesis


Macromedia university of applied sciences

Concept, Research, User Experience, User Interface, Prototyping, Animation, Branding & Logo

The climate crisis is perhaps the greatest challenge humanity is facing. We all – especially governments and corporations – have a responsibility to future generations. But each individual can make a positive impact. For many people, however, this is a difficult issue to address. They lack information, support, and appreciation for their efforts. To overcome this challenge, I created an app that tracks your carbon footprint and rewards sustainable behaviour with the fictitious currency “EcoBux” (Eco: Ecological, Bux: Bucks). At that time, there was no solution that combined carbon tracking, offset, education on climate and sustainability. These features themselves often have not been addressed well. For that reason, an easy-to-use solution with a great user experience should make the difference – „EcoBux“.


Nominee & Exhibition
Kölner Design Preis 2019
Museum für angewandte Kunst Köln


The users earn the fictitious currency “EcoBux” according to the amount of CO2 saved as a reward. That can be flexibly converted into money or donations. Users can decide to either reward themselves or support climate action. While they begin their journey due to the extrinsic motivator and reward, the application aims to develop a personal, intrinsic motivation in the long term.

The user as the hero on their journey to a “climate saver”

Motivation & Habit creation
Extrinsic rewards that lead to intrinsic motivation in the long term

Gamification elements, such as daily goals, special events, streaks and multipliers

The project was nominated for the Kölner Design Preis 2019, an annual award that honours the best thesis projects from design graduates in cologne. The nominated works were exhibited at the MAKK (Museum für angewandte Kunst/Museum for applied arts) in cologne from October to November 2019. 



The carbon footprint is an abstract concept
Understanding which activities are carbon-intensive isn't easy. Keeping track of these activities, even less so.

Incentivizing long-term sustainable behaviour
Motivating oneself for new habits and lifestyle changes is a tedious task, especially when the impact is abstract.

Climate action
While ecological behaviour on an individual scale can net benefits, it's important to engage people to demand climate action from governments and corporations.



Through the research and the design process, I was able to uncover valuable insights regarding the issues people are facing on this topic. I evaluated motivational and behavioural theories, as well as storytelling and gamification elements. I hypothesized that a mobile app would be the best solution for this problem, since it's always available and doesn't require additional investment.

Furthermore, I surveyed over 150 people about their knowledge and engagement on climate action, what motivates them and their expectations for the app.

Many respondents said that they struggle to estimate which activities emit how much CO2. Therefore, I decided to integrate information articles into the app. By simplifying and automating tracking the emissions and providing additional assistance, the overall effort should be reduced to a minimum. 

would use the app.

weren't actively working on sustainable habits before but would start with the app.

Desired rewards

  1. Money
  2. Donations (for climate causes)
  3. Products
  4. Discounts
  5. Others

To provide all users with satisfactory rewards, I created the “EcoBux” token, which can be flexibly spent for different rewards. A comparison of personal statistics, close to a competitive scoring system with other users turned out to be a niche feature, that would be used by a small group of people. I therefore shelved this idea.


Exhibition Kölner Design Preis 2019

For the exhibition at the MAKK, I created an animated video that showcased the entire app and its interactions on a screen, accompanied by a poster and a brochure that explained the app in detail.


Photos by creators from
Agnieszka Boeske, Motah, Boudhayan Bardhan, Richard Bustos, Cassie Matias, Kazuend, Ninno JackJr, Daniel Seßler

Back to top Arrow