MIICT aims to support the integration of migrants and refugees by providing access to key information and services through ICT-enabled solutions as well as the options to take advantage of those services. The project is building on a dedicated co-creation and co-design approach for developing the IMMERSE platform. Through intuitive user interfaces, which will be developed together with the end-users, the platform matches offer from authorized service providers with profiles of migrants and allows them to make use of them as part of their integration process.
Previous research has shown that housing, social integration, employment, interactivity, training and education are major challenges and at the same time crucial factors for a successful integration of migrants. Of course, migrants are not a homogenous group and include individuals of different age groups, genders, education levels and immigration status. The status, culture and migration pathways as well as institutional constraints shape the experiences of migrants. Migration and the processes towards integration are highly complex and indicate the diversity in the migration and integration process.
The Innovation Action (IA) project “MIICT: ICT Enabled Public Services for Migration” funded by the European Commission through the framework programme Horizon 2020 (H2020) in the course of the call “Addressing the challenge of migrant integration through ICT-enabled solutions“ (DT-MIGRATION-06-2018-2019) was conceived with the goal of designing, developing and deploying tools that address the challenge of migrant integration. In service of this goal, the project undertakes to co-create ICT-enabled services with migrants, refugees, public sector services, NGOs (Non-Governmental-Organisations) and other interest groups.
By involving migrants, helping organizations and public bodies as well as policy makers in the project, MIICT aims to create useful services provided through intuitive interfaces to allow access to key public services. The aim is to design the services in a way that they actually address the requirements of migrants and refugees.
MIICT will be implemented by a total of 15 partners, which are coordinated by the Sheffield Hallam University (UK). In addition to SYNYO GmbH (Austria), the partnership includes Center for Security Research (Greece), Laurea University (Finland), Law and Internet Foundation (Bulgaria), Aditess LTD (Cyprus), Certh (Greece), Agenfor International (Italy), Eurothink (Republic of North-Macedonia), Ministry of Justice (Italy), FUNDEA Euro-Arab Foundation for Higher Studies (Spain), Center for the Study of Democracy (Bulgaria), Caritas Cyprus (Cyprus), Municipality of Engomi (Cyprus) and the Association for Local Democracy (France).
During the project duration of 36 months, SYNYO will be responsible for designing and implementing the user interface of the IMMERSE online platform. The IMMERSE platform will improve the autonomy of migrants to search for jobs, housing, education and other opportunities as well as for social integration offers. The platform will host a dashboard for public authorities to assess the contexts, including social, economic and other factors for improving local support systems. Also, IMMERSE will allow providers to include services such as education, welfare, employment and healthcare in host countries for matching them with the skills and requests by migrants.
In addition to being one of the core technology and development partners, SYNYO will furthermore be involved in the co-creation workshops and the piloting in Cyprus, Italy and Spain. Finally, SYNYO will also lead the dissemination, communication and exploitation activities for boosting the visibility, impact and sustainability of the MIICT project.
MIICT addresses the following major objectives:
- Co-design ICTs to assist in the integration of refugee and migrant populations through the provision of customised access to key public services
- Develop an adaptive ‘plug-and-play’ integration framework for the incorporation of new ICTs into existing public service infrastructure
- Improve migrant integration management by providing a job and skills matching decision support tool – IMMERSE
- Deepen societal understanding of the factors that impact upon refugee and migrant populations ability to access key public services
- Produce a repeatable and proven open consolidated methodology for co-designing ICTs for public sector service transformation
- Integrate, demonstrate and rigorously test a number of co -designed ICTs that streamline access to public services and ease the integration of refugee communities
These objectives will be implemented along the three main phases of the project, which are focussing on Inspiration, Ideation and Implementation. The project is therefore situated within the wider concept of a human-centred design, which puts the end-users and key stakeholders at the centre of the requirements elicitation, solution design and development process.
Migration, integration, ICT, online services, digital platform, public authorities, dashboard, database, matchmaking