UCL Public Policy


Improving access to life changing assistive technologies

Led by Professor Catherine Holloway, director of the Global Disability Innovation Hub, UCL experts are leading a global programme to improve access to life-changing assistive technology.


20 February 2023

International policy case study

Research title: Improving access to life changing assistive technologies
Faculty: UCL Faculty of Engineering Sciences
Activity: Research
Policy type: International disability rights, international public health
Country/Region: Africa and the Middle East, North America, Europe, East Asia, South Asia, South East Asia and Australasia, Latin America

Policy partner: UN Agencies; NGOs; Other International/Multilateral Institutions


Almost a billion people around the world need assistive technology (AT). Wheelchairs, prosthetics, hearing aids, glasses and digital technologies are critical in enabling equal access to employment, education and independence for people with disabilities.


The UCL-based Global Disability Innovation (GDI) Hub is leading AT2030, a £20 million UK aid-funded programme to improve access to AT for millions of people worldwide. The GDI Hub is working in partnership on the programme with UN agencies (WHO, UNESCO and UNICEF), global academic institutions and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), It brings together partners who have not traditionally worked in AT with those who have, to test new ideas with users, experts and innovators.


Testing community-led, systems-focused and market-driven approaches in more than 15 countries, AT2030 is supporting innovations and entrepreneurs, field-testing solutions, influencing policymaking, and exploring new ways to deliver AT


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