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How It Went: UCL Town Hall Meeting to Launch Our Research Centre

On Monday 19th February GDI Hub was delighted to be joined by a full house of guests to celebrate the opening of our new research and teaching Centre at UCL, Here East. The event, held at the newly opened UCL building in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, was an opportunity for us to share our vision for the future; looking at how we can build a disability innovation movement, based in east London, to tackle global injustice. Bringing together leaders in disability innovation across the academic, business, and charity sectors, speakers included Prof Nigel Titchener-Hooker, Dean of Faculty of Engineering Sciences at UCL, Lord Holmes of Richmond MBE, Chair of the GDI Hub Board, and Prof Paola Lettieri, Academic Director of UCL East. We were also honored to welcome a panel of leading thinkers to offer their reflections on disability innovation in East London. This included:

  • Prof Nora Groce, Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre, UCL
  • Kamran Mallick, Disability Rights UK
  • Michael Vermeersch, Microsoft
  • Julian Walker, Development Planning Unit, UCL
  • Vicki Austin, Director of Strategy and Partnerships, GDI Hub

The event also provided an opportunity for GDI Hub Academic Director Dr Cathy Holloway to outline her vision for the new Disability Innovation Centre at UCL and announce the Hub's new MSc Disability, Design and Innovation, which will begin this September. During the evening we also launched a fantastic scholarship opportunity with the Snowdon Trust, which will provide funding for three disabled students on our MSc programme beginning in September. We were delighted that so many people were able to join us, and were blown away by the passion, energy and enthusiasm in the room. We look forward to working with you all moving forwards as we continue to build collaborations, partnerships and programmes to create a movement to accelerate disability innovation for a fairer world.

Catherine Holloway standing on the far left delivering a lecture to a full auditorium, there are many wheelchair users in the front row.

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