Abstract

The use of virtual-reality technology in the areas of rehabilitation and therapy continues to grow, with encouraging results being reported for applications that address human physical, cognitive, and psychological functioning. This article presents a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis for the field of VR rehabilitation and therapy. The SWOT analysis is a commonly employed framework in the business world for analyzing the factors that influence a company's competitive position in the marketplace with an eye to the future. However, the SWOT framework can also be usefully applied outside of the pure business domain. A quick check on the Internet will turn up SWOT analyses for urban-renewal projects, career planning, website design, youth sports programs, and evaluation of academic research centers, and it becomes obvious that it can be usefully applied to assess and guide any organized human endeavor designed to accomplish a mission. It is hoped that this structured examination of the factors relevant to the current and future status of VR rehabilitation will provide a good overview of the key issues and concerns that are relevant for understanding and advancing this vital application area.

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