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This specific support action proposal aims to contribute to the definition and development of a renewed European social model for one category of disadvantaged population; the ageing workforce, which is increasingly excluded from the labour market.

eSangathan - Collaborative Workspace for Ageing Workforce

The eSangathan project has officially started on October 1, 2006 for a duration of two years. It is an EU-funded support action in the frame of the IST FP6 programme. The work will be concentrated on a very specific segment of the population: the ageing knowledge workers. Indeed, the European demographics tell us that most of the people will have to work longer. This is already a common practice in India, where a large proportion of the retired knowledge workers continue to work for their former employers as experts.

Europe faces globally a very low level of employment of the 50+ knowledge workers and has to improve this situation rapidly according to the Lisbon Strategy. Keeping in mind the Indian social model and using European technological capabilities should enable more European 50+ knowledge workers to join again the labour market. eSangathan will be testing this approach in the Öresund region in Sweden/Denmark through a heterogeneous group of ageing Swedes and Danes; both retired and working people. Folkuniversitetet in Sweden, one of the partners of the project, in co-operation with the Copenhagen Business School (CBS) in Denmark, another partner of the project, will run this group of people who will elaborate on areas of interest within nodes of growth in the region with collaborative working environments as working tool.

A second pilot will be run in India in one of the major corporations in order to test how the implementation of a collaborative working environment could facilitate and turn more efficient the work and the life of the expert retirees. Mahindra & Mahindra corporation will, as a member of the consortium, host and manage this pilot with the technical support of Tech Mahindra.

The methodological approaches used to define, segment and implement the pilots come from CBS. The whole project is conceived as a virtual community thanks to the experience and support from Netcipia.

The scientific experience of this specific segment of population lies with AgeProof; the Dutch partner of the consortium. Distance Expert, a French consulting firm, is proud to co-ordinate such a team working collaboratively with the most advanced technological tools on one of the European key societal issues.

Each partner will set up a national interest group in order to gather the most advanced views on this topic and to syndicate the major actors and develop the best possible social, economical and political recommendations.

At the end of the project a White Paper will summarise the findings and recommendations which will be publicly shared during two conferences in 2008: one in India and one in Europe.

Contact in Sweden:

Martina Sophia Bach, Project Manager, Swedish Pilot
Folkuniversitetet Syd
Cell phone: +46 708 583640
E-mail: martina@inquiringrelations.se

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