resilience

Using virtual reality technology to tackle hate and extremism in England

Students viewing a smartphone-driven virtual reality app via Google Cardboard

Students viewing a smartphone-driven virtual reality app via Google Cardboard

We were awarded Google and Institute of Strategic Dialogue Innovation Fund in early 2018 to develop 360 degree videos to address hate and extremism in schools. The fund is supporting innovative projects on and offline that seek to disrupt, undermine, counter or provide positive alternatives to hate and extremism.

Our project is aimed at children from 9 years to 11 years of age. The 360 videos, which would be viewable via virtual reality viewers (e.g. Google Cardboard) or via YouTube, will capture the experiences of children who find it difficult to connect with others from different backgrounds.

We are hopeful that the immersive experiences will help to generate empathy for others and to promote values of tolerance and anti-hate. The 360 degree videos in this project will allow students and the wider public to experience a “day in the life” of a young person from a socially excluded community, and in doing so foster social inclusion in a new immersive and engaging way.

More details of the project are at this link.

Colleagues involved at The Open University are: Peter Bloom, Evangelia Baralou and me.