Fraunhofer Portugal is amongst the organizations that supported the Hackathon named Hack for Good, organized by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. This Hackathon aimed at fostering the development of innovative technological solutions and in this 1st edition the theme was “Ageing and active living”. The initiative had the purpose of generating solutions to address ageing-related challenges.
Fraunhofer Portugal helped to define the main topics for the event: Communication and Social Relations, Cognitive Stimulation, Knowledge Transfer and Shared Economy, Health and Welfare, Formal and Informal Caregivers, Nutrition, Mobility and Personal Finances. Furthermore, Fraunhofer Portugal produced instructions to support groups in designing inclusive solutions which take into account older people as users.
Ana Correia de Barros, from Fraunhofer Portugal, participated as a mentor and as a member of the pre-jury team during the two-day event, taking place on April 23 and 24, in Lisbon. At Fraunhofer Portugal we work in projects related to these topics and we already have a large experience in developing products and services for seniors. Therefore, Ana, as a mentor, helped participants to understand the challenges related to ageing. As a pre-jury member, Ana helped to select the 10 finalist ideas, which were presented to the final jury.
From a total of circa 400 registrations, 157 participants were distributed into 36 small teams. Participants had different backgrounds, such as engineering, health and social professionals, design and management. This interdisciplinary nature is a plus and it was an excellent opportunity to get specialists in technology and ageing to work together. Additionally, seniors were present as well, giving important feedback about the idea.
There were also entertainment activities, workshops and networking moments for participants. In the end of the event, the 10 finalists pitched their ideas to the jury and three winners came out. These three awarded ideas were solutions to: support informal caregivers (1st prize), encourage self-monitoring of health and social interaction through gamification (2nd prize), and support to self-mannagement of medication (3rd prize).
At the closing sessions, we were delighted with two great announcements: all 36 teams will be invited to pitch their ideas and receive mentoring, and this Hack for Good is only the first of many to come! After such a successful first edition, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation wants to repeat the initiative.
What an excellent weekend! COLABORAR is glad that Fraunhofer Portugal was a partner of this development marathon to put technology at the service of seniors.