We believe that disability innovation can change lives by forging new methods of participation, working with the poorest communities to harness the value of innovation.
Disability innovation has the potential to shape global policy; corporate practice; investment strategies; cultural norms; individual behaviour and life outcomes. The technology revolution provides opportunities for scalability and access like never before.
Innovation Action is a collaborative initiative, launched by a consortium of partners brought together by innovation catalyst Global Disability Innovation Hub (GDI Hub), led by UCL Engineering and funded by UK Aid through the Frontier Technologies Hub and AT2030 programmes Our purpose is to bring people together to innovate on global challenges. We provide a space to enable people from all over the world to identify challenges and collaborate on solutions to help address some of the world’s most pressing problems.
Global logistics have been compromised by lockdowns and border controls across Africa and other low to middle-income countries (LMICs), leaving many businesses and citizens without key parts of their supply chain. This condition has exposed the rigid, inflexible state of production in many settings, demonstrating the need for locally resilient, flexible production ecosystems. LPLS is working to develop broader, restorative, and agile supply systems, while providing people with the life-saving health and community resources they need to face current restrictions.
Designing a new way to produce erasable tactile drawings and graphics to present visualisations to blind and partially sighted students and professionals. The project uses smart materials and research on ways to make them operational. The final output will be particularly useful to understand STEM subjects and to express and communicate ideas and creativity.
The AT Impact Fund was established to better enable frontier technology solutions to reach people with disabilities in Africa, and to test business models that are most likely to succeed. Assistive Technology Impact Fund is operationalised as a collaboration between GDI Hub, Brink, and Catalyst Fund, providing deep expertise in AT, innovation and venture-building in Africa respectively.
Up to £20,000 is available to support winning applicants in the development of employment solutions focused around mobile in Bangladesh. Mobile technology can act as a bridge to employment opportunities by helping people learn skills, increasing awareness of job opportunities and helping to get and retain employment opportunities.
GDI Hub has partnered with Humanity & Inclusion to support them with the research components of the project, to ensure that robust evidence is collected and analysed across all sites.
As part of the AT2030 programme, the GDI Hub will support Motivation in testing their new wheelchair provision system in Kenya to evaluate the quality of the new designs and understand how distributed manufacturing through 3D printing could augment current wheelchair service provision models.
Partnering with UCL and the International Committee of the Red Cross, the GDI Hub hosted the Enable Makeathon 2.0 in London. Five teams were selected to come to London to further develop their disability innovation ideas into new products and services over the course of a 16-day intensive ‘bootcamp’.