A laboratory of a Valencian university develops with several companies a neuroscience and ‘gamification’ project to monitor how people face challenges and complicated situations

Leisure and video games are two closely linked concepts, although in recent months one more element has been added to this equation: neuroscience. This field of science deals with the study of the nervous system, which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and networks of sensory or motor nerve cells – called neurons – throughout the body. But what do video games have to do with the nervous system? The answer would be Atemin.

This project, financed with more than 650,000 euros by the Ministry of Science and Innovation (MICINN), was born within the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV). It is the result of the work of LabLENI, the UPV’s Immersive Neurotechnologies research laboratory, together with the collaboration of the company Martin Brainon, specialized in behavioral sciences and risk management, and the firm Quatechnion, which develops technology-based solutions.

This is where ‘gamification’, the technique that combines learning with leisure to improve skills, joins neuroscience to see how a person reacts to certain stimuli or situations. Thanks to virtual reality, Atemin guarantees behaviors and brain responses similar to those experienced in real situations.

During the experience carried out by this project, the user is monitored by recording all their behaviors and interactions. The movement of your gaze and its physiological response are also analyzed, thanks to a sensor that measures the galvanic rate of the skin that indicates its level of activation or stress.

Users interact with the virtual environment, which is presented in game format, while all their decision processes are evaluated. “Atemin analyzes more than 200 data per second and its predictive algorithm has achieved an accuracy of more than 70% in the dimensions that are evaluated”, point out the people in charge of the project.

Based on the behaviors and reactions of the users during the experience, the Atemin system can process all this information and predict its results with high precision in terms of the different dimensions that make up risk decision-making.

Its primary objective is to help companies in risk management, focusing on the human component and, unlike traditional tests, without biases of age, gender or job position. “We make more than a million decisions a day, so investing in improving the capacity of this decision making has a direct impact on the security, profitability and productivity of companies and more in the current context, of uncertainty and change constant ”, argue Olga Pérez and Noemi Álvarez, founding partners and CEO of Martin Brainon.

Seven dimensions

With the information collected, Atemin is able to obtain a decision-making profile and train up to seven dimensions that directly influence this process: emotional self-regulation, attention, control, persistence, impulsivity, aversion towards uncertainty and mental flexibility.

Once the profiling is done, the platform allows training skills through virtual reality. The system provides tailored instruction for each person, where, on the one hand, the two dimensions that have obtained the lowest value are exercised and, on the other, the dimension with the best results to take it to excellence. “After training, seven out of ten people improve their attention and mental flexibility,” highlight those responsible for the project. “And 100% improve in at least two dimensions in their decision making,” they add.

The virtual reality on which Atemin is based has been designed to be applied in any business sector. This approach allows us to contemplate physical, strategic or social risk, also facilitating a personal growth of the participants beyond their working life.

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