iStopFalls, project that has developed and implemented a system to predict and prevent falls, including exercise games, has been included in the list of Top 25 influential ICT for Active and Healthy Ageing projects.
A new European Commission study analysed the impact on society of EU-funded Research and Innovation in technology for active and healthy ageing in order to find out which of the projects had the most influence in Europe over the last 11 years.
Responding to potential challenges that demographic change presents, and ensuring that the necessary framework is in place to help Europe take advantage of the opportunities that the sector can provide, has become ever more important. This is why the European Commission has invested a great deal of resources into research and innovation (R&I) projects in ICT for active and healthy ageing. "In fact," the study authors note, "Active and healthy ageing has enjoyed an increasing presence over recent years in the key R&I European initiatives."
Impact on society
But what has this funding brought us? The European Commission study entitled 'Impact of EU-Funded Research and Innovation on ICT for Active and Health Ageing - The Top 25 Most Influential Projects' analyses key results achieved from EU-funded projects on this topic under Framework Programme 7, the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme and Horizon 2020.
The report, written by the European research and consultancy company Outsight, also includes recommendations for future R&I projects related to active and healthy ageing. According to the authors, one of the 25 most promising projects in terms of impact and with regards to the European Commission’s Triple Win Strategy (improved quality of life, increased efficiency of health and long-term care, market growth and expansion of the EU industry), was iStopFalls.
iStopFalls developed and implemented ICT-based technologies to predict and prevent falls which can be easily integrated in daily life practices of older people living at home, and which allow for continuous exercise training, reliable fall risk assessment, and appropriate feed-back mechanisms, based on discreet measuring technologies and adaptive assistance functions.
The iStoppFalls consortium had the required expertise in the necessary technological and scientific areas, namely fall prevention& prediction, exercise programs & exergames, unobtrusive sensing, advanced reasoning, end-user accessibility, and planning & implementation of controlled randomized clinical trials. All scientific partners had an outstanding scientific reputation, and many of them are leaders in their respective fields. The consortium had the required technology-related power provided by Philips Research Europe, Instituto Biomecanica Valencia, Kaasa Solution, and Austrian Institute of Technology, including the required exploitation expertise with both an innovative SME and a large enterprise. End-User usability & accessibility know-how as well as modern HCI concepts provided by University Siegen, and experienced fall prevention & prediction as well as exercise know-how is guaranteed by our partners German Sports University Cologne and Neuroscience Research Australia.
IBV researchers stood out that "thanks to the knowledge acquired in this and other projects related to the elderly and healthy aging, IBV has acquired the knowledge and skills necessary to, beyond research, be able to develop applicable technologies in a real context and transfer them to the market. As a concrete example of this activity, FallSkip is an innovative system to evaluate fall risk in older adults".