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29 July 2021
Researchers from Porto develop job seeker mobile app

A new job seeker mobile app was developed by researchers at the Systems and Computer Engineering Institute of Porto (INESC Porto). It is called ‘Life Skills VR - Life Skills for Employment in COVID-19 Era through VR Innovation and it could be a swift tool to help mitigate the unemployment rates due to the ongoing pandemic. The project takes on a consortium format that includes countries such as the United Kingdom, Greece, Italy and Malta.

The ‘Life Skills VR - Life Skills for Employment in COVID-19 Era through VR Innovation is an application that will present as an alternative to vocational tests, by combining gamification techniques and the Holland Method, which is a code that determines the adequacy of personality to professional careers.

INESC TEC considers that virtual reality will enable to "identify citizen’s qualities and competencies”, especially the youngest ones, who are unemployed, and combine them with the features of a certain profession and thus "direct them to the most suitable job that fits their profile”.

"This solution that is put forward now aims at filling the gaps between the current vocational tests by offering an attractive involvement from the present generation”, as stated by Demetrius Lacet, INESC TEC researcher.

In addition to the vocation by users, this app is also aimed at promoting the acquisition of new digital skills and "help them develop the so-called ‘soft skills’, namely teamwork, time management, problem response or dealing with error”, António Coelho, also a researcher at INESC-TEC adds.

Job agencies, professional vocational institutions, non-government organisations, universities and other institutions in Portugal will test the app in 2023.

This project is financed in circa 300 thousand euros by ERAMUS+, the Centre for Factories of the Future Limited (UK), IDEC (AINTEK A.E.) (Greece), Fondazione Polo Universitario Grossetano e ARTES 4.0 - Advanced Robotics and Enabling Digital Technologies & Systems (Italy) and the Mediterranean Maritime Research and Training Centre (Malta).

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