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Somebodyelse – Embodied experiences in VR


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  • Projekt-Nr: GRS-008/21 
  • Förderbeitrag: CHF 150'000 
  • Bewilligung: 14.01.2021 
  • Dauer: 02.2021 - 04.2023 
  • Handlungsfeld:  First Ventures, seit 2018



Somebodyelse creates embodied experiences in VR to help people to understand an issue in an immersive, educational and playful way to raise awareness and enable positive behavioural change. In 2015, the United Nations all agreed on 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which are part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. But social, cultural, and environmental problems still seem to be accumulating worldwide; sustainable cities and communities, access to health and therapy, or social wellbeing are still huge problems to tackle. People are still not sufficiently aware of the underlying problems, cannot understand, imagine, or relate to them, and therefore, will not change them either. Digital technologies such as Virtual Reality (VR) allow a wide range of people to experience abstract content appealingly. And, today we know that people can better understand and emphasize through a self-made bodily experience.
We contribute to these topics through our innovative approach with Embodied Experiences, where we let people experience a different perspective. Using methods of Biomimicry, we create a virtual copy of our world, in which we visualize unseen and unperceivable phenomena in our world. Through VR, we make abstract contents tangible in a multi-sensory and -modal way. This allows us to sensitize our users to meaningful topics, and eventually engage a discourse or action to solve complex social challenges.
Based on our Pilot Product BATVISION, where people can discover the perspective of a bat in an urban environment, we are transferring our approach to further issues. We aim to evolve from a product within edutainment into a tool that can be used in recurring use cases in the areas of experiential learning, providing therapy or improving social communication. We want to explore this potential and create the basis for future applications in areas such as wellbeing, digital education or health management.


During the two years of support from Gebert Rüf, we were able to complete the development and testing for our pilot project BATVISION. In May 2022, we successfully launched BATVISION on the Swiss and German markets. BATVISION is currently on display in three museums and has been used for around 20 events in Switzerland. The investigation of embodying a spider into the field of psychological therapy for arachnophobia resulted in an ongoing cooperation with a ZHDK knowledge visualisation alumni Barbara Schuler. Furthermore, we established a partnership with Swisscom, where we developed and tested different interactive workshop formats around the topic of extended realities (XR) and social change. These workshops set the base for a partnership for our co-development approach. The workshop formats are used for onboarding clients, inspire them about the possibilities in XR, and eventually result in a further collaboration or development for XR-experiences. For the next year, we push sales of our current products and will continue and expand our co-development projects.


Am Projekt beteiligte Personen

Eliane Zihlmann, Co-Projektleitung
Raffaele Grosjean, Co-Projektleitung
Pascal Felber, Software Developer & Game Designer
Kathleen Bohren, Software Developer & Game Designer
Hanh-Dung Nguyen, Software Developer & Game Designer
Nicole Kind, Betreuung ZHdK
Anna-Lisa Martin Niedecken, Mentorin ZHdK
Hubert Krättli Geschäftsleiter Stiftung Fledermausschutz Schweiz

Letzte Aktualisierung dieser Projektdarstellung  18.03.2024