The inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities in the workplace is limited. It is challenging to find, secure and keep suitable jobs. The majority go directly on to disability income after finishing high school. The InnArbeid project investigates how to improve this transition from school and into a working life.
The aim is to develop services and technology that enable young people with intellectual disabilities to make use of their abilities in the workplace. This will bring about benefits both to the individual – in terms of improved quality of life – and for society at large, in terms of reduced expenses and an increased value creation.
InnArbeid will facilitate the transition between high school and working life by assisting in developing and positioning their potential for work. This includes, for example, a digital interaction platform for the person and their collaborators in the municipality and working life; a communication solution that facilitates contact with employees at the care home, school and relatives; a job-search tool to connect with potential employers as well as support tools for assistance in particular work situations.
To develop technology with individualized solutions for people with reduced learning ability presents a complex task. We have proposed an Action Design Research approach which includes user-need mapping, co-creation, evaluation and implementation through iterative processes whereby users participate in all the stages of development. The method and results will challenge current practices and regulations for education, employment, municipal services and NAV (The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration).
User involvement in every project phase will contribute to the innovation of appropriate and applicable solutions as well as providing an anchoring in the region, thus strengthening the possibilities for realization and further implementation. A business model will be developed for the realization of the innovations.