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ICT Enabled Public Services for Migration

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - MIICT (ICT Enabled Public Services for Migration)

Reporting period: 2018-11-01 to 2019-10-31

MIICT (ICT Enabled Public Services for Migration), aims at designing, developing and deploying tools that address the challenge of migrant integration through the co-creation of improved ICT-enabled services with migrants/refugees, public sector services, NGOs (Non-Governmental-Organisations) and other interest groups. These services will be offered through the “IMMERSE” (Integration of Migrants MatchER SErvice) platform.

Solving the problem of migrants' integration within the EU enhances societal cohesion. It reduces migrants' susceptibility of being seen as a threat to their host communities and it enables them to make meaningful contributions to society.

MIICT has six main objectives with the human-centred design approach at its core:
• 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.
A Project Management Board was set up and a quality assurance handbook and a data management plan were developed. To ensure adherence to EU and National legal and normative frameworks and to key ethical and societal values and principles, MIICT research ethics protocols were developed, the Security, Ethics and Confidentiality Committee (SECC) was established and a comprehensive legal and ethical analysis was conducted. Also a framework analysis report of existing relevant legal frameworks, literature and industry/expert opinion on legal and ethical frameworks and requirements in relations to data protection and the GDPR was also developed.

Requirements definition was the most significant outcome of year1. Specific challenges were shaped and framed from the perspective of migrants, public sector services and NGOs. Information from was elicited through a qualitative research approach, using a combination of focus-groups at three pilot locations (Spain, Italy and Cyprus) and interviews and questionnaires across Europe. In parallel, a detailed desk-based research was conducted to ensure that all subsequent work was aligned to the requirements established.

Co-design and co-creation workshops took place at the same pilot locations involving migrants, public sector services and NGOs alongside MIICT multidisciplinary team of experts who used well established methods including cognitive and context mapping, storyboarding and paper prototyping.

Requirements elicited, design frames developed, case studies documented and outcomes of phase one co-creation workshops formed the building blocks for defining the IMMERSE system. IMMERSE system requirements and architecture was developed taking into consideration security-by-design principles, and other ethical, legal and compliance issues.

A comprehensive dissemination and communication plan was also introduced, MIICT Brand and Dissemination Guidelines were developed and MIICT online presence was realised through its website and social media accounts on twitter and LinkedIn. A policy brief report was developed considering a number of issues and potential improvements to EU and member states policies around migration, labour market and other public sector service access. Further detailed recommendations were given for MIICT three pilot locations: Spain, Cyprus and Italy.
MIICT exceeded the current state of the art in three areas:
1. Involvement of migration partners at pilot sites
This was achieved through close collaboration with key partners in Cyprus, Italy and Spain allowing for the inclusion of a wide range of migrants' border countries and various migration service stakeholders. The approach facilitated extensive knowledge gathering of specific challenges for migrants.
2. Research filling knowledge gaps
The research which took place in the first year of the project will enhance knowledge of migrant integration processes, particularly from an access to ICT services consideration. MIICT approach considered challenges facing migrants and topics such as gender and the capacity of NGOs and service providers by combining qualitative and quantitative data analysis and involving actual migrants and a variety of stakeholders and subject matter experts. MIICT research support for filling such knowledge gaps will enhance the development of the co-designed ICT solutions, improve methods of migrant integration management and deepen societal understanding of the factors that impact upon refugee and migrant populations.
3. Provide direct solutions to migrant integration problems
MIICT’s IMMERSE platform will cater to migrants’ requirements for ICTs to assist them in integrating within host communities. The technical roadmap developed in year1 was based on developing a holistic co-collaborative set of ICTs with migrants leading the development process, with the objective of increasing confidence in ICT systems and in accessing essential public services.

Expected results and potential impacts:
MIICT will deliver a tangible impact for migrants’ integration through key processes including new collaborative holistic research to identify challenges that migrants face. Research conducted will benefit future EU research projects, initiatives and member state policy making, as well as mould practical ICT solutions to directly resolve migrant problems and improve their integration process.

MIICT activities in contributed to impacts in three main areas:
1. Policy Impacts
Two reports were produced with the objective of having a positive effect on influencing existing migration policy through recommendations and best practice modelling:
•ICTs for Social and Public Services Transformation and Policy Review Report
•The First Policy Brief.
The policy brief included policy recommendations considering issues and potential improvements to EU and member states policies around migration, labour market and other public sector service access, with additional detailed recommendations given for Spain, Cyprus and Italy.

2. Societal Impacts
A series of case studies as part of preliminary research at pilot locations took place and requirements were elicited through focus groups, interviews and online questions targeting migrants, service providers, NGOs and subject matter experts to ensure that the IMMERSE platform will have societal impacts across the EU, creating better societal integration for migrants and providing socio-economic benefits for the host country.
3. Innovation Impacts
MIICT Innovation impacts are realised in multiple outputs such as the Co-Design for Public Service Transformation Handbook. This handbook will consist of MIICT co-creation ethos and report summaries and set best practices for relevant stakeholders to pursue ICT solutions and migrant integration supportive tools. It will consolidate inputs from some of year1 major outputs.