Empowering immigrant future-seekers

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Abstract

TECHNOLOGY + DIVERSITY

International migration is a complex phenomenon that touches on global economic and social aspects affecting our daily lives in an increasingly interconnected world. This thesis was was exploring strategies to improve the problematic integration curve for refugees and immigrants trying to settle down in countries like Sweden.

User-centred research with refugees, immigrants and experts led to the understanding that many of the users had trouble expressing themself. This inspired the idea of handing them a technology that would help convey skills, social objectives and background stories.

The result is Navi - a community service consisting of a conversational interface that matches the user to similar professional audiences. The website and system hosts curated events, coaching and ways to collect experiences over time - leading to increased opportunities for social and professional networking.

Inspiration and Method

The problem definition and final design are the results of intense user-centred research immersion through contextual interviews, design probes and workshops with refugees and immigrants. Experts were involved such as refugee job coaching firms, SFI ( Swedish for foreigners), schools and local NGO:s.

Many of the users had trouble expressing themself using the local language and English. This inspired the idea of creating a digital assistant that would help translate the immigrants skills, social objectives, and background story.

Result

The result is Navi, a community service consisting of a conversational voice assistant. Navi creates a profile and matches the user to similar minded audiences. The website and system hosts curated events, coaching and ways to collect experiences over time, leading to increased opportunities for social and professional networking.

Long term benefit

Holding on a job is instrumental to feeling integrated within our societies. The shift becomes from a dependency towards agency, mitigating the receiver-giver dynamic of integration by helping refugees chances in economic empowerment and in developing their personal and professional networks.