The ISEDA project (Innovative Solutions to Eliminate Domestic Abuse) aims to produce, test, evaluate, and upscale innovative solutions against domestic violence and abuse in Europe. Its consortium, coordinated by the Cologne Game Lab from the TH Köln – University of Applied Sciences brings together 15 partners from nine different countries.

This joint research project seeks to combat and eliminate domestic violence (DV) by employing an enriched European approach, utilizing modern technological tools and practices, and improved multi-sectoral expertise in its activities. One of these tools will be a chat-bot, which will employ empathetic language and inform victims on ways to get help and assistance, as well as refer them to hotlines, police authorities, or other first responders to de-escalate violent situations. The chat-bot will also familiarize citizens with the different types of DV, how to prevent, detect, and investigate it. With the victims’ consent, an integrated data platform will gather court-proof evidence to build legal cases and record trends on the nature, frequency, and circumstances of DV.

A key activity of the ISEDA project will be to provide training, primarily to police authorities, through interactive learning. Trainees will develop the necessary skills to better assess DV situations, respond accordingly, and provide better assistance to victims and a just treatment to their cases. Awareness on DV will be further improved through campaigns integrating the input of victims via informational guides, posters, and videos. Education Programs will focus on sensitizing and engaging students, fostering know-how on deconstructing toxic gender stereotypes and gender based violence, and promoting healthy relationships and zero tolerance to violence. The ISEDA project will also promote and implement perpetrator programs as an alternative to imprisonment and a chance for positive change. Such programs have the potential to significantly increase the quality of life of both victims and perpetrators.

Besides coordinating the project, the Cologne Game Lab will develop a serious game that will simulate different interview scenarios. This game will function as a training tool for police officers to hone their skills at conducting interviews by  following standardized procedures. The development will also focus on creating believable, expressive virtual characters that will respond to the trainee’s input in order to train them at assessing body language, not to rely solely on the interviewee’s answers to assess a situation.

Overall, the ISEDA project has the potential to significantly enhance the fight against DV on a European level and contribute to the establishment of the necessary robust long-lasting structures to eliminate it by employing multidisciplinary expertise and addressing the different aspects of this issue.

The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 101073922.

More information: https://cordis.europa.eu/project/id/101073922