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Denmark's military wants to recruit gamers

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Denmark's military wants to recruit gamers
File photo showing Danish F16 fighter aircraft in Kuwait. Photo: Ritzau Scanpix
13:00 CET+01:00
The Danish armed forces is looking to gamers to bolster its ranks of pilots, flight commanders and radar operators.

The move is being considered after Danish Defence (Forsvaret), the country's armed forces, found that gamers have a good capacity for learning, strategic sense and ability to visualise, all of which could be put to good use in the air force, broadcaster DR reports.

“Gamers have certain skills in being and remaining calm under pressure, faster reactions than other young people, quick decision making, good teamwork skills, orientation and strong ability to visualise,” Major Anders Bech, head of section with the Danish Ministry of Defence's Personnel Agency, said to Ritzau.

“These are all abilities which we could use,” Bech added.

The military's assessment that gamers have potential as future air force personnel comes after several trials, which have included the involvement of Danish e-sports team Astralis.

Positive impressions gained through trials have also been echoed in real-life recruitment, the personnel agency leader said.

“2017 was the first time we specifically looked at gamers, by being visible on the platforms frequented by them. And we got twice as many applications as we usually do,” Bech said.

“As such, we were easily able to find enough qualified applicants for our flight leader programme, which is one of the more difficult programmes. We normally go through 20 or 40 applications before finding one that is suitable,” he explained.

Danish Defence is now set to establish a partnership with E-sport Danmark, the federation for electronic sport in the country, in an effort to increase the number of applicants who may have honed their skills through gaming.

“It's hard to say how much of a gamer you should be. That will be put to the test when applying with us. If you send an application, you will be invited to a test,” Bech said.

“But we are still interested in finding out whether (gamers) can work out as soldiers. They have some core skills which we are interested in, but there are also other requirements in regard to being able to function as a soldier. We can't say anything for certain about that yet,” he added.

Denmark's military holds ongoing tests on a year-round basis for applicants to most of its educational programmes.

READ ALSO: Number of Danes unsuitable for military service a concern: soldiers' union

 
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