Global Coalition on Aging Partners with the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum 2021

WSIS Forum 2021 ICTs and Older Persons Track Features First-Ever Healthy Ageing Innovation Prize

New York, NEW YORK (February 23, 2021) – The World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum 2021 and the Global Coalition on Aging (GCOA) announce their collaboration on the first-ever WSIS Forum Healthy Ageing Innovation Prize to be awarded  at the WSIS Forum 2021.  The prize will be awarded to the most innovative technology that enables healthier and more active ageing and will be presented in parallel with the WSIS Forum 2021 Special Track on ICTs and Older Personswhich is designed, organized and supported by GCOA. WSIS and GCOA are accepting submissions now. All submissions must be received by 15 March 2021. ​​​​For more information and to formally submit your idea, click here.

“We are delighted to be partnering with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the WSIS Forum again in 2021, and to be able to announce we are now open for submissions by all ICT practitioners, which will be judged by a pre-eminent panel of global experts,” said Michael Hodin, CEO, Global Coalition on Aging.  “It is especially timely since 2021 is the launch of the UN/WHO Decade of Healthy Ageing. GCOA is also pleased to offer the winners and finalists of this WSIS special prize the opportunity to engage with and seek advice from our global, cross-sector, Fortune 100 member companies from the technology, biopharma, financial services and elder home care sectors.”

ICTs have an important role in supporting the need for people to stay healthy, connected and independent and are critical for the sustainability of economic and health systems.  This award aims to support the efforts of those entities that have recognized the dual benefits of innovating for this US$17 trillion global market and creating opportunities for their own populations.

“We are enthusiastic with the level of expertise, interest and focus the Global Coalition on Aging was able to bring to the WSIS Forum 2020 Special Track on ICTs and Older Persons,” said Malcolm Johnson, ITU Deputy Secretary-General. “And now it is timely to extend the content and substance of the track to include the first-ever WSIS special prize focused on healthy ageing.”

GCOA is also partnering with WSIS on the Ageing Better with ICTs hackathon, a first-of-its-kind hackathon to inspire ICT innovation for the Silver Economy.

About WSIS

The World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum represents the world’s largest annual gathering of the ‘ICT for development’ community. The WSIS Forum, co-organized by ITU, UNESCO, UNDP and UNCTAD, in close collaboration with all WSIS Action Line Facilitators/Co-Facilitators, has proven to be an efficient mechanism for coordination of multi-stakeholder implementation activities, information exchange, creation of knowledge, sharing of best practices and continues to provide assistance in developing multi-stakeholder and public-private partnerships to advance development goals. This Forum will provide structured opportunities to network, learn and participate in multi-stakeholder discussions and consultations on WSIS implementation. The Agenda and Programme of the Forum will be built on the basis of the submissions received during the Open Consultation Process. The Forum enables participation from all over the world to engage with high-level representatives of the wider WSIS Stakeholder community, including ministers and deputies, ambassadors, as well as leaders from the private sector, academia and civil society. Furthermore, the WSIS Forum 2021 will provide an opportunity to serve as a platform to track the achievements of WSIS Action Lines in collaboration with the UN Agencies involved and provide information and analyses of the implementation of WSIS Action Lines since 2005. ​For more information, visitwww.wsis.org/forum

Latest Developments

We keep our members and partners in touch with the most recent updates and opinions in the worldwide dialogue on population longevity and related issues.

A Bipartisan Bill Could Prevent The Next Pandemic

In Washington, Republicans and Democrats are typically at loggerheads when it comes to healthcare policy. Just consider the recent Inflation Reduction Act, which made extensive changes to Medicare and also extended Affordable Care Act subsidies. Every single congressional Democrat voted for the legislation, while every single member of the GOP voted against it. But occasionally, a bill is such an obviously good idea, and so desperately needed, that it commands significant bipartisan support. The PASTEUR Act, co-sponsored by 31 Democrats and 31 Republicans in the House and two members of each party in the Senate, is just such a bill.

Korea Must Act Now to Combat Growing AMR Threat

Public officials are overlooking one of the gravest long-term threats to the Korean people, the health system, and economy: antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Some pathogens ― bacteria, fungi, parasites, and viruses ― have evolved strains that resist the antimicrobial medications we currently have available to fight them. Health care professionals often must watch helplessly as patients succumb to infections that antibiotics could once have easily beaten. They know that new antimicrobials, including and especially antibiotics, could easily gain the victory ― but they have none at their disposal.

Policy Statement on the Impact of Price Negotiations on Innovation, Healthy Aging and Equity

As the CEO of the Global Coalition on Aging (GCOA) and a newly formed cross-sector Alliance for Health Innovation, we write to express our deep concern with the current legislation that allows for price “negotiations” in Medicare – a thinly veiled signal for America’s plunge into price controls that will have a devastating and adverse impact on biopharmaceutical innovation and our nations’ ability to support healthy aging. 

Ignoring the ‘Silver Economy’ May Be Getting Costly for Brands

In an ad for Airbnb that premiered earlier this year, a couple checks into a cozy Spanish villa. To the tune of Jay-Z's cover of "Me and My Girlfriend," the ad shows the pair settling into their rental and setting their collective dial to chill. They play ping-pong, sip some wine, and get ready for a night on the town. They're also in their 80s, celebrating their 57th wedding anniversary. In no way does the ad characterize the couple as elderly or portray them as needing special aid or services — they are just active people who happen to be old. It's a rare example of ads featuring a realistic depiction of aging.

Health Equity Promise and That Innovation Thing

President Biden has pledged his administration to defeat cancer, Alzheimer’s, and other diseases that target America’s aging population. To achieve these lofty goals, bold words must be backed up by bold actions.

Roundtable Report Highlights Importance of Immunizing Canada’s Caregivers Against Influenza, Identifying Challenges and Opportunities to Protect This Critical Group

The Global Coalition on Aging (GCOA) today released a report summarizing key insights from an expert roundtable on vaccinating Canada’s caregivers against influenza. The roundtable, held virtually, brought together leading Canadian health policy experts, family caregivers, patient advocacy groups, aging experts, and other thought leaders to discuss challenges and strategies to reach this critically important yet hard-to-reach group.