Spark Innovation

We work with local communities and stakeholders to accelerate local disability innovation solutions relevant to their community, turn unmet or under-met needs of disabled people into an opportunity. Our current areas of spark innovation includes hackathons and innovation activities related to research grants such as TIDAL N+.

Spark is our mechanism to kick start innovation and test proof of concept. We provide evidence and participation support, with access to co-design participants and validation of innovation concepts. The most successful spark innovations will feed up the pipeline - transitioning to the start-up innovation ecosystems.

3 men sit together on the floor, working together to design
Previous Enable Makeathon Event

Spark events portfolio

  • Creating accessible interfaces for people living with MND, ALS or MD: alongside UCL Computer Science and The International Alliance of ALS/MND Associations we hosted a hackathon exploring accessibility problems using digital devices, with participation in three countries (UK, Kenya, and Korea).
  • Enable Makeathon 2.0: partnering with UCL and the International Committee of the Red Cross, the GDI Hub hosted London's Enable Makeathon 2.0 - which took place alongside a parallel event in India. The Makeathon brough innovators into an intensive co-creation and incubation camp, with access to expertise, resource and mentorship to drive product development, refinement and strategy for Assistive Tech solutions. The most successful ventures received investment to propel there product into the market.

Do you have an idea for a Spark Innovation Event?

To submit an event proposal by completing this Microsoft Form: Spark Innovation Event

A group of people working together during a hackathon event
Previous Hackathon event in action

Sub-projects

Poster of the event, which reads: Inclusive Design Challenge 1.0 - 6th - 20th June, 2022 - Design solutions for improving access to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for blind and partially sighted people.

Access to open spaces for blind and partially sighted people

One of the first Spark Innovation activities is an Inclusive Design Challenge, inviting young innovators to design solutions for improving access to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for blind and partially sited people. The event takes place between 6–20 of June, 2022.

Text graphic 'GDI Hub Accelerate spark' with a lightening bolt

Creating accessible interfaces for people living with MND, ALS, or MD

GDI Hub, UCL Computer Science and The International Alliance of ALS/MND Associations will host a hackathon together to solve accessibility problems using digital devices with participation in three countries (UK, Kenya, and Korea).

photo of team smiling next to a GDI hub banner

Enable Makeathon 2.0

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’.

Sub-projects

Poster of the event, which reads: Inclusive Design Challenge 1.0 - 6th - 20th June, 2022 - Design solutions for improving access to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for blind and partially sighted people.

Access to open spaces for blind and partially sighted people

One of the first Spark Innovation activities is an Inclusive Design Challenge, inviting young innovators to design solutions for improving access to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for blind and partially sited people. The event takes place between 6–20 of June, 2022.

Text graphic 'GDI Hub Accelerate spark' with a lightening bolt

Creating accessible interfaces for people living with MND, ALS, or MD

GDI Hub, UCL Computer Science and The International Alliance of ALS/MND Associations will host a hackathon together to solve accessibility problems using digital devices with participation in three countries (UK, Kenya, and Korea).

photo of team smiling next to a GDI hub banner

Enable Makeathon 2.0

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’.