The project

Objectives and stages

Objective

The European strategy on the Area of Security, Freedom and Justice, was to ensure that the EU citizens’ rights are protected sufficiently even when they are in a different Member State than their own. Therefore, the main idea envisaged in this project is to create a one-stop provider in EU smartphones and/or tablets regarding EU citizens’ rights when they fall victims of a crime, deploying a citizen-centric, user-friendly and dynamic mobile application for Android and iOS operative systems.

Empowerment of EU citizens' rights

The RightsApp application will provide tailored knowledge from many different sources: EU legal instruments; national legal frameworks; European e-Justice portal; and supplementary information, for instance, the contact details of nearby victim associations, the criteria to obtain free legal aid if you are a victim of gender-based crime, among others. The tailored knowledge will be translated to English, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian.

Design & Development

The project foresees the development of a decision tree that models relevant legal and supplementary information understandable by a citizen with no legal background, and the design of a questionnaire that will collect specific information for the characterization of the citizen’s current situation. Furthermore the project foresees the piloting of the use case of citizens that study abroad within the EU, specifically, the pilot will be carried out in the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (UAB).

Analyse

The research team will conduct surveys, focus groups and tutorials that will be focused on citizens studying in: the UAB Faculty of Law, the new comers at the UAB International Welcome Point, students from Erasmus Programme of the UAB Faculty of Law and LAST-JD Erasmus Mundus
students. The main target is to analyse the results from awareness-raising, empowerment and usability perspectives.

Disseminate

European citizens and academia are the two main target groups for this project. The interaction with these target groups is fostered from the beginning of the project as the rationale of the dissemination strategy foreseen is to receive feedback to improve features and usability of the RightsApp mobile applications. The project addresses together communication needs of both the awareness-raising and the use of RightsApp to raise public awareness among European citizens on their rights when they fall victim of a crime.

The team is mainly composed of two non-profit organizations within the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB): the UAB Institute of Law and Technology (IDT-UAB) and the UAB International Welcome Point (IWP-UAB).

The UAB Institute of Law and Technology (IDT-UAB) is a research centre promoting cutting-edge research on law and technology from an interdisciplinary perspective. Its core mission is that of fostering research devoted to provide legal professionals, institutions, organizations, and citizens with appropriate technologies to enhance their legal work or to improve the exercise of their rights. Appropriate technologies in this context imply that research is user oriented, so that both the technological design and its developments are tailored to the needs of the end users and not the opposite.

The UAB International Welcome Point (IWP-UAB) is an office designed by the International Relationships Office to provide services to all foreigner members of the UAB community. Thus giving support for the students, lecturers, administrative staff and services staff from other countries. It provides practical information like legal procedures for EU and non EU citizens, health cover for EU citizens, budget for living in Barcelona and useful addresses. Moreover, the IWP provides support on foreigners stay and work permit renewal applications, coordinates assistance among UAB offices and assistance to international postgraduate grant holders.

Moreover, UAB Faculty of Law (FoL), LAST-JD Erasmus Mundus (LAST-JD) and Catalan Society of Victimology (CSV) will also contribute to qualitative and quantitative research and dissemination as well. The UAB Faculty of Law every year receives more than 60 students from other countries to study abroad in its student mobility programs (Erasmus Programme) and every year about 2.600 individuals enrol at its degrees and post degree courses. The UAB LAST-JD Erasmus Mundus receives every year about 15 students in their PhD studies. Finally, the Catalan Society of Victimology groups together lawyers, psychologists, doctors, social workers, among others.