An estimated one billion people around the world are living with disabilities, and while great strides have been made towards inclusion, people of determination remain at a higher risk of poverty and social exclusion. As a result of physical barriers, unsuitable tools and discrimination, the employment rate is significantly lower than the overall average.

In the Republic of Korea, Coactus – a social start-up selected as one of Expo 2020 Dubai’s Expo Live Global Innovators – has created a tool that enables those with hearing loss to operate a taxi business by facilitating communication between deaf taxi drivers and their passengers.

Through the intuitive Goyohan solution, developed by university students, trained taxi drivers with hearing impairments can easily communicate with passengers before and during their ride. Using the Goyohan Taxi app installed on tablets in the taxi – one in the front for the driver and one in the back – passengers are able to give their destinations to the driver by writing or typing into the tablets, and pay by clicking a button on the screen.

Coactus provides training to all its drivers and, thanks to its success, provides a long-term and stable employment opportunity for hearing-impaired drivers in the Republic of Korea.

With the support and visibility of the Expo Live programme, Coactus is contributing to job security for the hearing impaired, while breaking stigma around hearing-impaired drivers and people of determination more generally.

The Expo 2020 Dubai Innovation Series is a weekly blog series highlighting some of the creative and world-changing innovations that are being showcased via Expo 2020 Dubai’s programmes and pavilions.

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