Flemish Care Living Labs Recognized in AAL Forum 2014
Birgit Morlion (Program Director of iMinds - Health) recently brought the Flemish Care Living Labs under the attention of more than 500 participants during the AAL Forum 2014, held in Bucharest, Romania. Birgit spoke about the Flemish Care Innovation Space, a Flanders-wide initiative aimed at improving the quality of life for the elderly through facilitating innovative care processes and products.
Ambient Assisted Living
Considered the flagship event of the Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) community in Europe, the AAL Forum seeks to demonstrate existing and developing ICT solutions geared towards promoting improved quality of life for older adults. Birgit Morlion was invited speaker during the ‘Deployment of AAL Solutions - Living Labs’ session, chaired by Ann Ackaert iMinds-IBCN, about the Flemish Care Living Labs being a good recipe for innovation.
Importance of Flemish Care Living Labs
As the aging population is expected to triple, there is a striking need to optimize health care to keep it affordable and accessible for everybody by 2020 and more in particular for the elderly. Birgit discussed the role of the Flemish Care Innovation Space in fostering innovative solutions tailored to the elderly’s needs in Flanders. Within this network, there are 6 living lab platforms, 23 active projects and 111 cross-sector partner organizations collaborating with end-users to develop and test innovative solutions in all domains of elderly care.
The Flemish Care Innovation Space is designed to promote an open ecosystem that enables business innovation and accelerates the innovation process. Compared to other Living Lab programs the Flemish Care Living Lab is unique since it is not infrastructure driven but tackles both societal and economic challenges through putting the care process centrally and actively involving industry, care organisations, local government and last but not least the elderly. “The challenge is how do we to keep our Care Living Labs sustainable,” says Birgit.
Flemish Care Living Labs and iMinds
iMinds is the central point of contact for all Care Living Labs located in Flanders. Not only do we facilitate collaboration among all the living lab platforms, iMinds will also guide and support them with their lab methodology, thanks to our expertise in Living Labs research.
AAL Forum 2014
The AAL Forum is an annual event, hosted by an AAL partner state, for the increasing European AAL community to meet and discuss various topics relevant to the adoption of AAL solutions in the market. For 2014, the theme was “Broader, Bigger, Better – AAL Solutions for Europe” and the program was split into four different tracks to facilitate discussion:
Track A – Deployment of AAL Solutions
Track B –Broadening AAL
Track C – Supporting Projects to Market
Track D – Innovation