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Start date: Dec 31, 2014, End date: Mar 30, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Legislation, norms and regulations in the field of waste management are under constant development and new technologies and knowledge emerge continuously, requiring industry to adapt rapidly to survive. This requires the capacity to detect, understand and apply these developments. There are sectors which are facing great difficulties to detect, understand and apply these developments, while at the same time generating a considerable amount of hazardous and/or dangerous waste. It concerns sectors with a high concentration of (micro)SMEs which focus on non-knowledge intensive activities. The car or vehicle repair and maintenance sector is a typical example of this, it is one of the branches which face great difficulty to transform or adapt their activities to the current legislative, normative and regulatory developments and the adoption of good environmental practices. Traditional methods are currently predominant in the sector with respect to training in this field, including for waste management. Traditional training in this sense is understood as attending physically a training course, where a trainer transfers theory, and best practices are merely explained and exposed but not experienced. However, this type of training is not tailored to the needs of the target public, partly due to the their reluctance to these type of methods (on many occasions the reason why left in early stage formal education and training, or opted for lower level VET training with a more hands-on learning approach). But another, an no less important reason is that the number of staff in these kind of SMEs is already low, and has suffered even more due to the economical crisis. This increases the strain on existing owners and staff, with more hours and much less flexibility, reducing the possibilities for participation in training that required physical presence and fixed hours. CARWASH will provide an answer to this challenge by developing an easy understandable and user-friendly serious game with its support training platform, which will provide the professional (i.e. owners and staff) of the car repair and maintenance sector, with the knowledge. skills and competences to properly understand and apply the legislative, normative and regulative framework concerning management of hazardous and/or dangerous waste, and implement good environmental waste management practices. The serious game and support training platform can be accessed on-line and is prepared for mobile use, allowing for complete customisation with regards to time and place. The playful learning approach through a serious game counteracts many of the inconveniences for the target public as encountered in traditional training. The professionals of the sector will gain knowledge on waste management, which by law they are obliged to obey by. In many occasions the lack of specific knowledge (or the awareness about their importance and relevance) lead to non-compliance and thus sanctions in case of inspection. The skills and competences acquired will allow them not only to adhere to the legislative and normative framework, but go even a step further and implement good environmental practices, and reduce the decision-making times. Good waste management and environmental practices are appreciated by the clients, and a company can distinguish itself by communicating this and increase their client base. Both future professionals as active ones increase their employability, by being up to date on knowledge and skills which are demanded by the legislator, but also by society. Expectations are that waste management and good environmental practices will be an important aspect of the daily tasks of these professionals, today and in the near future.
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