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InnovationH Competition

Picture by AGYA

CfA: The InnovationH Competition

31 Aug 2020

Application Deadline

For those with mobility limitations (elder persons; disabled patients lacking sufficient strength or muscle control), something as apparently simple as getting in and out of the bath, bed, toilet or car, would require the constant physical assistance of a person (family member, nurse, care provider). This manual lifting act is dangerous for all the people involved, leading to back pain or other injuries for the patient and the care provider. In addition, the privacy of the affected individual is often compromised, leading to embarrassment and discomfort for the person in need of care. Mobility hoists or mobile patient lifts have been designed as a fantastic aid for assisting with the care of a limited-mobility person. They can be handled by one person safely. As such devices are often unwieldy, carrying the mobile patient lift in addition to the wheelchair is difficult when leaving home. Therefore, the social and even the professional life of the disabled individual are compromised as he/she is deprived from travels, having holidays, and attending training courses and seminars.
The Arab-German Young Academy of Sciences and Humanities (AGYA) and its member Dr. Lilia Romdhane from the Faculty of Sciences of Bizerte, Tunisia, in cooperation with AGYA alumnus Dr. Tobias Redlich, from the Helmuth Schmidt University, Hamburg, Germany in collaboration with Ecole Supérieure Privée d’Ingénierie et de Technologies (ESPRIT), in Tunisia are pleased to call for applications for the InnovationH Competition.
The InnovationH Competition challenges individual candidates or candidate teams to use their creativity to develop innovative, cost-effective and practical lifting solutions for people with mobility impairment from developing countries for indoor and outdoor uses. The design and prototype of a patient lifting device should include the following functionalities and properties:

The desired mobile patient lift…

  • will be capable of being operated by one person with a small force,
  • will be safe for both patients (takes into consideration the severity of the handicap) and caregiver,
  • will be light, small, compact, and portable
  • will be used at home even in narrow places and low-height places (low-height bed, for example)
  • can lift a person from the floor
  • can lift a person into and out of a car
  • can be stored in the boot of a car
  • enables holidays to be taken
  • can be taken onto a plane/train/ship
  • can be easily transported    
  • is made of innovative and low-cost materials

Candidate Application
Each person from Germany and Arab countries interested in solving problems/challenges is eligible. Therefore, persons coming from different discipline including architecture, arts, business, computer science, engineering, industrial design, medicine, nursing, occupational therapy etc. are welcome to apply. Therefore, the workshop is opened to anyone with the interest in proposing or creating an open source appropriate technological solution to the identified accessibility/lifting issues.

How to Register
Individual candidates or candidate teams of up to three people are welcome to fill the registration form and to specify their team names. They are also invited to download the project template and fill it. The link to the project has to be mentioned in the registration form.

The candidates are also invited to produce a 3-minute video of their project ideas and to use an upload link in the corresponding field.
The deadline for the submission of project ideas is 31 August 2020.

Project Evaluation
Each submitted project will receive a double evaluation: a peer-review and a selection committee evaluation. At the end, each project will receive a final score. Peer-evaluation rules are the following:
•    Each team has to evaluate three competing projects according to previously defined criteria
•    Unfair evaluations are not accepted

1 - 14 September 2020
Individual candidates and candidate teams will be invited to evaluate three competing projects during a peer-review process. In addition, the selection committee will evaluate the projects. This is the pre-selection step.

15 September 2020
End of the pre-selection process. The 20 best-evaluated designs will be selected for an idea pitch during the Phase I online seminar on 2 - 3 October 2020. Candidates will be contacted.

2 - 3 October 2020
A two-days Phase I online seminar and training will be organized during which 20 individual candidates or candidate teams of up to three people will pitch their solutions to the addressed challenge.

The five best designs will be retained for the second phase of the project, which consists of the fabrication of the prototype that will be held in Tunisia in 2021.

A detailed program for the Phase I online seminar, training, and project pitch on 2 - 3 October 2020 is available on the InnovationH Competition website.

After the Phase II InnovationH Competition fabrication workshop in 2021, the winning individual candidates or candidate teams will receive €1.500 (1st place), €1.000 (2nd place), or €1.000 (3rd place).

Date, Time & Venue

Application deadline: 31 August 2020



Contact & Registration


Dr. Lilia Romdhane
Phone: +216 97 464 780
Email: lilia.romdhane[at]fsb.rnu.tn

Mahmoud Hamza                   
Phone: +216 58 822 892                            
Email: mahmoud.hamza[at]esprit.tn           

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