On April 10th, 2019, UAB presented the user-centric methodology that will be adopted for the development of the Rebuild’s Digital Companion at the TransMedia International Meeting.
Last April 10th, 2019, UAB researchers María Jiménez-Andrés and Blanca Arias-Badia presented the user-centric methodology that will be followed for the development of the Rebuild’s Digital Companion at the TransMedia International Meeting. The event took place at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Bellaterra, Spain) and was organized by TransMedia, an interdisciplinary research group focused on media accessibility. TransMedia is currently active as a partner of the Rebuild project.
In accordance with the project’s objectives, the Rebuild’s Digital Companion is expected to enable two-way communication using chatbots. It aims to support communication among migrants and refugees, the local population, the local authorities, support services, and NGOs, especially during the first stages of the migrants’ integration process. End users have already started to be involved in the tool creation process by means of focus groups held in Italy, Greece and Spain by the different partners participating in the project. These focus groups explore the impact of culture in technology. Specifically, refugee participants have been asked about how they think technology could contribute to their more effective integration in Europe, about their use of phones and computers, as well as about their trusted sources of information, among other issues. They have further been invited to provide feedback about currently available apps for the Rebuild project researchers to gain awareness of the challenges that lie ahead in the creation of the new Digital Companion.
Further focus groups held in the same countries, yet to be scheduled, are bound to provide information as regards the convenience of pictorial communication for users that do not speak the languages supported by the tool and the illiterate. Since Rebuild aims to develop a fully accessible tool, the researchers leading the presentation at the TransMedia International Meeting took advantage of the group’s event to hold a focus group with accessibility experts to discuss different graphic styles to be used in the project to communicate with migrants through the digital companion.