Cooperate – Developing new possibilities to cooperate in diversity teams in the field of software engineering

The demand for IT experts especially in the field of software engineering is high and the  job opportunities are very good. The idea of the Cooperate project is to improve the inclusion of people with visual impairment into labour market, especially into IT jobs. The project was initiated by the Study Centre for the Visually Impaired and the FZI Forschungszentrum Informatik in Karlsruhe and is funded by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.


The aim of the project is to develop a collaborative tool which supports inclusion in diversity software developing teams consisting of members with normal sight, low vision and blindness. Graphical description languages such as UML are commonly used in the software engineering process. The collaborative tool to be developed enables real time transformation of the graphical content e. g. in UML-diagrams which can be outputted by a screenreader, a magnification system, a Braille display or by audio output. Moreover, concepts for training and training material on how to use the tool will be developed during the project.


As part of the project, a textual description language for the UML was created. The description language is published on the website

A cooperation tool was also developed under Eclipse that can be used for cooperation between people with and without visual impairments. It was created as an OpenSource project and can be downloaded from GitHub.


Project Duration

01.01.2015 - 31.12.2017

Prolongation till 30.06.2018

Financial Support

Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

Press Release (PDF - German only)

Logo Cooperate