The IMPACT Center at the University of Pittsburgh provides tools and approaches to comprehensively understand barriers and facilitators to successful Assistive Technology Tech Transfer (ATTT), raise awareness and increase the capacity of researchers and entrepreneurs to perform successful ATTT. Through research, training and technical assistance, the IMPACT Center's diverse team is here to lend a hand in helping researchers and entrepreneurs take an assistive technology idea and turn it into an impactful solution.
IMPACT HAS THE FOLLOWING GOALS
Understanding Barriers & Faciliatators
Barriers such as fragmented markets, lack of clear regulations and financing, as well as high rates of abandonment of devices by end-users and limitations in ATTT research hinder progresses towards successful ATTT. To overcome this we must look at user-centered approaches, global markets, streamlining efficiency and interdisciplinary collaboration.
Raising Awareness & Increasing Capacity
The IMPACT Center is improving on existing tools and creating new ones to raise awareness of the need for successful ATTT and increase the capacity of researchers and entrepreneurs to do so through a multilevel online training program, a readiness assessment tool, and an innovation management system.
Why assistive technologies? Assistive technologies are needed by nearly a billion individuals worldwide (Tebbutt et al) and is expected to double over time in parallel to the growing market (World Health Organization). This potential impact and market size opportunity underlie the urgency to perform effective ATTT. Poorly defined and fragmented markets, a high rate of abandonment of devices by end-users and a lack of funding and clear regulations are cited as barriers to successful ATTT. Successful ATTT is possible despite these hurdles. There is a need to streamline and improve the efficiency of ATTT that requires interdisciplinary collaboration of the healthcare landscape, researchers, industry and the community.
The IMPACT Center will jumpstart engagement and increase capacity to collaborate, develop approaches to meet the growing need of the AT industry, mobilize partnerships, and overcome barriers to create a larger scale impact and perform successful ATTT.