During AudiologyNOW! 2012, held recently in Boston, the Oticon Foundation and the nonprofit Ida Institute launched a worldwide call for ideas that have the potential to generate better understanding of hearing loss, change public perception, and encourage people to take action. The initiative, titled "Ideas, Speak Up - Action and Awareness for Hearing Loss," is an open innovation competition funded by the foundation and facilitated by the Ida Institute. Individuals and groups are invited to submit their original ideas online for awareness projects that have the potential to affect change locally and/or globally, are simple and cost-effective, and inspire people to action.
"The Ida Institute has consistently demonstrated that collaborating with others can lead to answers, solutions and breakthroughs that result in positive change," said foundation chair Niels Boserup. "Ida Institute will apply its unique approach to innovation and collaboration to collect, process and evaluate ideas for future awareness-building projects that will benefit people with hearing loss."
The idea-generating competition calls upon the strengths of individuals in the private and public sector, as well as universities, associations, manufacturers, people with hearing loss and their families, and the general public.
"The collaborative process will enable us to engage the collective intelligence of our Ida network and the general public to build awareness of hearing loss and its impact," said Lise Lotte Bundesen, managing director of the Ida Institute. "Everybody is invited to share their best ideas through our online platform."
The call for ideas runs through September. During that time, ideas will be shared online at www.awarenessforhearingloss.com, and commenting and voting will take place. From October through February 2013, implementation plans for the top 10 ideas will be developed. In February an expert panel of judges - made up of thought leaders in a variety of hearing and health care, innovation and communication disciplines - will select three winning ideas that will be announced at AudiologyNOW! 2013.
"If your idea is selected, you will have the satisfaction of seeing your idea turned into reality and possibly help change public perception of hearing loss and inspire people to take positive action to address hearing loss," explained Bundesen.
Participation in the online competition is free and open to all. To register visit www.awarenessforhearingloss.com.