For a 3rd year, as a supplement to last week’s Aging & Longevity, Conference Round Up 2022, this is a short listing of events – conferences, innovation forums and pitch presentations related to technology, aging and longevity. Gerontechnology – the field where technology intersects with aging and longevity, has many diverse purposes and applications related to the health and social well-being of older adults throughout the life course.
Gerontechnology is really not that new. This interdisciplinary field grew from the mid-1980s when, as Jan A.M. Graafmans, who coined the term in 1988, said that supportive technologies in aging are designed to: “…create a better quality of living environment for aging and aged people, supporting them to live an independent life of their own choice and for as long as possible.”
Fast forward to the 2020’s and Age Tech has become the more popularly used term to capture what has now become a full multi-product and service market for supportive technologies designed to improve or enhance life for older adults. If you are looking to get a clearer grasp of what this market is all about, a new book – The Age Tech Revolution by Keren Etkinis due out right about the time of this post. Etkin is thefounder of The Gerontechnologist.com
In 2021 there were a number of Age Tech virtual events that I attended, including some that focused solely on Digital Health technology. There is both a research and development side and a consumer market side to the Age Tech narrative which it could be said, while quite well along and growing more over the last two years, is still in its early phase – almost a new moon. The Age Tech Innovation Week from AGE-WELL, last October, offered a great panoramic view of this.
Organizations such as AGE-WELL, Canada’s Technology & Aging Network, the Stanford Center on Longevity, with their annual Design Challenge in the USA and Aging 2.0, an international, interdisciplinary and intergenerational network of chapters in over 100 cities globally, exemplify how this revolution is playing out. So here’s what’s up for 2022 and I know there will be lots more.
At this year’s 2-day event, which I have signed up for, the Centre for Aging & Brian Health Innovation (CABHI) will as they say, “explore innovation and investment in longevity, and the ways in which Age Tech is helping older adults and caregivers make choices that are right for their own aging journeys.”
A segment of the major Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) event, HCI International conferences have a number of technology themed events. This one, ITAP, covers a diverse range of sub-themes under ten categories for older people, including Health, Social Inclusion & Connectedness, Home & Housing, E-Commerce & Finance and Work.
Theme: Gerontechnology in the Era of Artificial Intelligence
This production is from the International Society for Gerontechnology and makes the point in its introduction of this theme that “the issue of digital equity will be brought to attention in the context of global aging and sustainable development.”