The Nordic Independent Living
Help us solve
Are you a
• The Nordic population is ageing and the demand for innovative solutions and
technologies is increasing. The five capitals are addressing this issue together –
creating a joint market for the Nordic health and welfare technology industry.
• We invite new and established innovators to participate in the Nordic
Independent Living Challenge. We ask you to come up with innovative and
sustainable solutions that can increase the quality of life for the frail elderly and
people with disabilities, and make it possible for them to live independently in
their own home.
• The competition runs from January 2015 to June 2016, and the main prize is 1
million NOK. We also have special awards for Nordic collaboration and student
• As a participant in the competition, you will be offered access to knowledge,
mentoring, workshops, networking and test facilities. And not at least, you will get
a unique opportunity to work in close collaboration with the Nordic capitals.
From 2007 to 2012, Copenhagen, Oslo and Helsinki
increased their social expenditure with 27 % combined,
from 4,4 to 5,6 billion EUR. The social expenditure is
expected to continue increasing in all the Nordic capitals.
Together, the five cities represent a substantial and
rapidly growing market.
The cities have recognised the need for innovation and
collaboration across the Nordic region and have
committed both time and resources to make it happen.
As organisers of the Nordic Independent Living
Challenge, they will host projects and workshops as well
as provide mentors, knowledge and test beds for end
THE NORDIC CAPITALS
The cities need new and effective solutions to the
welfare challenge. Technologies and services that can
save resources and increase the quality of life for elderly
and disabled citizens.
of life for
We will gather the most innovative people
in the Nordic region to create new
collaborations and partnerships across
borders and disciplines.
We believe this can take innovation in the
health and welfare sector to the next
WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOU?
As a participant in the competition, you
will be offered access to knowledge,
mentoring, workshops, networking and
test facilities. And not at least, you will get
a unique opportunity to work in close
collaboration with the Nordic capitals.
Everyone with an innovative idea can join!
THE NORDIC INDEPENDENT LIVING CHALLENGE
The five Nordic capitals have joined forces to address
the issue of independent living for the elderly and
disabled. Together, we have created the Nordic
Independent Living Challenge, and we are inviting
new and established players to help us come up with
The competition will be launched in January 2015,
and we offer a main prize of 1 million NOK and special
awards for cross-Nordic collaboration and student
As a participant, you will be offered feedback,
mentoring, workshops and matchmaking events, and
you will get a unique opportunity to test your solution
with the Nordic capitals.
The competition aims to enable and enhance
independent living and the quality of life for the frail
elderly and for the disabled.
At the same time, we want to boost innovation and
collaboration in the welfare technology industry and
create a joint Nordic market.
The competition offers
... as well as three grand prizes
1 million NOK
A total of 150
Up to 75 of the
Up to 25 of the
THE FOUR STAGES
Developing Testing with
Nordic Innovation is promoting cross-border trade and
innovation in the Nordic region.
Working under the auspices of the Nordic Council of
Ministers, Nordic Innovation is a key player in
implementing the Nordic Cooperation Programme for
Innovation and Business Policy 2014-2017.
One of the projects in this programme is the Innovative
Nordic Welfare Solutions project, aiming at making the
Nordic region world-leading within innovative health and
welfare solutions with export potential.
Nordic Innovation sees great opportunities in a more
integrated Nordic health care market with enhanced
collaboration, and is launching the Nordic Independent
Living Challenge together with the five capitals.
Nordic Innovation is supporting this project for a
number of reasons:
Focus on a
EFFECTS ON END-USERS
EFFECTS ON MARKET AND SOCIETY
Launch Matchmaking Developing Testing with
Hi, my name is Sonja.
I enjoy having my calendar full. I always have a lot of events to
look forward too. I like to meet people and keep myself up-to-date
on what happens in the world.
I keep myself fit and busy. I believe people with no hobbies or
activities age more quickly.
Last year I fell on my bike and now I cannot get around like I was
THE FRAIL ELDERLY
THE FRAIL ELDERLY
Today, elderly people represent 25 % of the entire
Nordic adult population. This number will rise to
more than 40 % in 2030 and 45 % in 2050, meaning
there will soon be a dramatic increase of people in
need of solutions that can increase their quality of
life and help them be able to keep living
We see the elderly as great resources
in the ideation process of this
The elderly end users need solutions that can increase
their quality of life. This could be in areas like:
Hi, I am Rasmus!
When I was little, I had a brain tumour which was operated. I have
difficulties in remembering and focusing on things.
I think everybody needs to be good at something. Some of us just
need help to get there.
When other people make solutions for me, I get confused. But if I
make my own systems, I understand them.
Help should be something that you choose. Not something that is
enforced upon you.
Between 13 and 21% of the Nordic adult population
report that they have some kind of disability.
Nordic disabled are typically advanced users and
critical consumers. They possess considerable
knowledge and creativity, making them a valuable
resource in the development of new and
The disabled end users need solutions that can help them
stay active in many ways. This could be in areas like:
There will be an increasing need for
welfare solutions of good quality for
the elderly and disabled.
We need to develop solutions that
help improve welfare services and
at the same time make the job
easier and more efficient for care
professionals. This could be in areas
Relatives will to a greater extent
take part in caring for their elderly
and disabled, but at the same time
they have their own lives to run.
There will be an increasing demand
for solutions that can handle issues
CARE PROFESSIONALS AND RELATIVES
Hello, I am Thorfinn!
I am head of innovation and business development in a
multinational company developing household appliances and
other everyday technologies.
We have initiated a strategic project in the area of health care
solutions and are looking for ways to develop new solutions in
close collaboration with health care providers and end users.
This competition is a great opportunity for us to experiment in an
advanced and rapidly growing market – and collaborate with
some inspiring entrepreneurs.
ESTABLISHED SOLUTION PROVIDERS
ESTABLISHED SOLUTION PROVIDERS
The competition offers you several opportunities:The obvious place to ask for help is from the
established solution providers.
We are looking for technology and service
companies interested in accessing a Nordic market
and in working closely together with the five Nordic
capitals as well as with end users and new
As an established solution provider you
can bring know-how and development
capacity to the field, and you will be able
to exploit the opportunities in a
joint Nordic initiative and market.
The competition offers you a possibility
for dialouge with the five Nordic
capitals, access to end users and
an opportunity to establish new
Access to a
Hi there, I am Annukka!
I am a design student at the final year of university. Together with
some friends, I have recently started a company developing
software and simple technology solutions for the elderly. We share
an interest in increasing the quality of life for the elderly, and
together we possess the technology and design skills to be able to
develop new and interesting prototypes.
We do, however, need more knowledge about and access to real-
life users, and we are looking for partners for funding and help to
take our solutions to market.
We see the competition as a great opportunity to take our ideas to
the next level and to kick-start our company.
STARTUPS AND STUDENTS
STARTUPS AND STUDENTS
You can get:As startups, you come with an entrepreneurial spirit,
exciting ideas and flexibility.
The challenge provides an opportunity to get your
solutions developed and tested with real-life users
and a possible entry into a growing market.
In addition to the cash prize, the financial
support and the possibility to get your own
mentor, you will also get a chance
to meet and network with key
players in the field.
Hello, I am Björn!
I have a spinal cord injury
which means I cannot move
my legs at all and my arms
only a little bit, so I need to
consider accessibility in a
different way than many
I have a lot of ideas for new
products and services for
disabled people like me,
and I really hope I can find
some people to work with
in this competition.
PRIMARY AND SECONDARY END USERS
Hi, my name is Johanna!
I have been working at the municipal home
care service for the past ten years. I visit
elderly people and help them with their
I have often been thinking about what I
could do to make both their life and my own
working day easier. This competition gives
me a chance to try out some of my ideas
together with people who are able to
develop the technology.
Perhaps you as an end user have plenty of ideas for
new products and services for people in a similar
situation like yourself? With the right partners you
can be the foundation of a future export success!
Or as a care professional, you might have come up
with innovative solutions for how to improve your
clients’ living situation – or making your own
working day easier?
We can help you turning your ideas
into reality, and offer you financial support,
mentoring and networking with relevant
players in the field.
As a problem solving end user you will
be able to obtain:
Hi, I am Nagib!
I am a researcher and lecturer at a technological university. I have
been working with robotics for many years and my main research
interest is welfare technologies.
I believe that I can bring a lot of knowledge and experience to the
competition, and valuable insights from my research to the
I also see it as a good opportunity for my students to work with
real-life projects – especially if we can team up with people from
companies and other universities.
RESEARCHERS AND ACADEMICS
They will be interested in…Academic institutions are sources of new knowledge
and new perspectives. Innovation is on your agenda,
and most of you are looking for active collaboration
with the industry and the public.
The competition offers researchers a chance to work
with real-life challenges and end users - and an
opportunity to share your knowledge with others
and perhaps find commercial partners for
bringing your ideas to market.
And if you are a student, we offer you
real-life innovation experience, and
an opportunity to explore future career
The competition offers you: