Pilot studies as enabler for the market introduction of AAL solutions – Experiences from the Austrian pilot regions

Over the last years, a number of European research projects investigated the impact of assistive technology on the users’ quality of life (QOL) in pilot studies involving a high number of end-users [1]. In Austria, six AAL pilot regions were launched since 2012, supported by the Austrian Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMVIT) [2]. Within these pilot regions, AAL products and services are put into practice and tested over a longer period of time. Overarching goals are to evaluate the impact of AAL technologies in daily use and developing go-to market strategies involving representatives from businesses and the housing sector as well as stakeholders from research, health care, insurances and the public sector.

This session brings together representatives from Austrian and European pilot regions as well as interested participants from the AAL community. Focus will be put on exchanging experiences on the specific challenges related to planning, conducting and analysing large pilot studies. In this way the workshop aims at promoting the exchange amongst existing AAL pilot regions as well as to discuss how experiences from the pilot regions can help AAL projects to define better pilots in order to demonstrate the impact of their developments on individual, societal and institutional level.

The agenda for this session consists of two parts: In the first part, experiences on planning the evaluation methodology, defining solution packages, selecting appropriate impact indicators, and sustaining pilot regions will be shared by representatives of the Austrian pilot regions Smart VitAALity, RegionAAL, WAALTeR, and WestAAL. The second part of the session will be devoted to an open discussion session on implementing pilot studies in AAL projects. By reflecting upon and evaluating past or ongoing AAL projects with respect to their pilot activities, best practices and pitfalls will be identified.

[1] Siegel, C., & Dorner, T. E. (2017). Information technologies for active and assisted living− Influences to the quality of life of an ageing society. International Journal of Medical Informatics.
[2] Ates, N. et al. (2017). Assistive solutions in practice: Experiences from AAL pilot regions in Austria. In Proceeings of the eHealth 2017.