Alzheimer’s Society opens £4 million innovation challenge

Alzheimer’s Society, Innovate UK and Challenge Works have launched a new £4.34 million funding challenge to support innovations that help people with early-stage dementia to live independently.

The programme is calling for global innovations and potential break through technologies that learn from a person living with dementia, employ artificial intelligence and machine learning to adapt as their condition progresses, and to bridge the cognitive gaps that develop with the disease.

“Most existing technology for people with dementia is designed to keep them safe, or give their carers peace of mind. But there are huge opportunities to harness cutting-edge technology to help fill in the gaps in their brain and thinking as their condition progresses,” said Kate Lee, Chief Executive Officer, Alzheimer’s Society.

The programme will be delivered by Challenge Works, with £3.34 million in seed funding and grants to the most promising innovators, and a £1 million prize awarded to the winner in early 2026. In addition, wider support has been funded to provide innovators with insight and expertise – such as access to data, collaborations with people living with dementia and expert advice on product design and business aspects of the innovation.

George MacGinnis, Challenge Director for Healthy Ageing, Innovate UK, added: “This global prize is calling on world-class innovators to transform the lives of people living with dementia. Innovate UK, in our role as the UK’s innovation agency, is pleased to be supporting global innovators to create breakthrough products and services that can support independent living for people with the early stages of dementia, help them to live enjoyable and fulfilling lives, and provide their families with invaluable reassurance.”

To find out more and enter the Longitude Prize on Dementia, go to Entries close on 26 January 2023.