A preparatory meeting was organised at the AAL Forum Event in Denmark in 2010 with the help and support of Officials from ICT in Brussels to discuss issues concerning the lack of real impact from R&D. At that small meeting of invited senior people it was agreed that this topic must be addressed urgently with a desire to influence change and benefit to users, to the market, and to Member States.
Since that time we have established a small web site, encouraged exchange and cross border actions. Further events have been arranged at LSE and at the AAL Forum in Italy last September.
The ageing population presents many challenges but also offers opportunities for us all, users, stakeholders, technology developers, financial organisations and governments. The EU has defined policies that enable the welfare and well being of citizens to be addressed through the use of ICT for active ageing as well as independent and assisted living. Business interest in the silver economy is rising but not quickly enough. Case studies show indications that significant cost savings can be achieved. The recent WSD scheme in England has produced further evidence of potential benefit to specific users.
However, evidence of qualify of life improvement, new business, and cost effectiveness, is still patchy, fragmented and lacks comparability. Clearer business strategies are needed if active ageing and independent living technologies are to be successfully deployed at large scale.
The Knowledge Tree Group plans to create some coaching and training systems that will facilitate better understanding of need, opportunity, and an essential element for each Member State to follow. We look forward to your participation in this and welcome suggestions and comment.