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Virtual reality diversity training startup Equal Reality wins $30,000 from Optus to fuel US expansion

By Administrator | 20 November 2018

It’s often said you can’t truly understand someone until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes, and while the technology doesn’t exist (yet) to let you see through the eyes of another, Australian startup Equal Reality has developed the next best thing.

Founded last year by Annie Harper, Brennan Hatton and Rick Martin, Equal Reality aims to improve organisations’ diversity and inclusion training through the use of VR, literally putting users into the shoes of someone being bullied, harassed or discriminated against.

Users don the VR headset and are placed into a fully immersive experience where they take on the character of a person in the workplace who is being discriminated against — usually someone of a different race, gender or ability.

The simulation then runs through a scenario, giving users some choice as to their responses throughout. Once the scenario plays out, a different one starts, this time with the user embodying a bystander to the conflict.

Speaking to SmartCompany, Martin credits his co-founder Harper for the idea behind Equal Reality, but says he was uniquely drawn to the idea due to his own experiences with bullying in the workplace. Read more

Dominic Powell - Startup Smart - 16 Nov 2018


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