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Working healthily for longer - with the help of artificial intelligence

Prof. Dr. Christian Stamov Roßnagel © Jacobs University


December 19, 2018

It is intended to make work easier, especially for older employees: artificial intelligence (AI). A research cooperation between companies and science is developing AI-supported model solutions for personalized assistance and knowledge services. Airbus, Festo, Lufthansa and the Berufsförderungswerk are involved in the project, which is managed by "Das Demographie Netzwerk e.V." (ddn) and scientifically supported by the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) and Jacobs University Bremen. The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs with almost one million euros over the next three years.

The project combines two important thematic areas: demographic change and digital transformation. The internet of things and artificial intelligence open up new support possibilities in the form of intelligent assistance and knowledge services for employees in production activities. The recording and linking of machine and product data allows such services to be used for the flexibilization of processes - right up to the individualization of production. The project has the name NAWID, the term stands for the use of AI-based assistance and knowledge services in company-specific educational spaces, taking into account heterogeneous value worlds in demographic change.

NAWID tests, for example, the optimized use of exoskeletons, i.e. support structures for the body to better cope with physically stressful work processes. However, it also deals with forms of personalized learning support in the higher qualification of employees for new digital tasks. The aim is to reduce individual strain so that employees can work healthily for longer.

 "We are pleased to be able to contribute our findings on demographically sensitive work design from the cooperation with numerous well-known companies to this project. Due to demographic change, the age structure of the workforce has become more heterogeneous. The personalized services NAWID strives for offer opportunities that have been used hardly to date to make the world of work more development-friendly and healthier," says organizational psychologist Prof. Dr. Christian Stamov Roßnagel, who supervises NAWID on behalf of Jacobs University.

Employers and employees are involved in all project phases to create long-term solutions. Employees participate as co-designers in the development of the model solutions and thus promote their acceptance. Already during the project period important results are passed on by means of workshops in the value creation networks and industry associations. A think tank "Demography, Digitization and AI" is initiated, which picks up on new trends in the course of the project, evaluates them and transforms them into events for interested parties, partners and new networks.