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International Appropriate Technology Design Competition - 2008


The purpose of this competition is to encourage the creation of inexpensive appropriate technology (AT) for people with disabilities living in developing nations or impoverished areas of the world.


The completed form must be received before June 1, 2008. Send the completed form via email to Jon Pearlman with subject line of SIG-17 Design Contest.

Contest Rules

  • The design should be original and not a modification of an existing product unless significant improvements have been made. Previously submitted designs are not eligible.

  • Designs must be fabricated and photographed for entry.

  • By submitting your design, you agree to make your contact information (email address) available to those seeking to learn more about your design and provide permission for public disclosure of your design. Proprietary or restricted information should not be used.

  • Only one design can be entered per designer/design-team.

  • Submissions must be made in English.

  • Judging categories will include

    1. Wheelchairs
    2. Seating (including cushions
    3. Walking aids
    4. Communication aids
    5. Controls
    6. Other assistive technology
    7. Overall

  • A design can be entered into more than one category.

  • If less than three entries are received, the entries and prize money will be deferred until the following year.


Designs will be judged on the following criteria: 25% Importance (need for this device), 25% cost, 20% availability of materials and technology, 10% innovation and creativity, and 20% potential effectiveness.

The ten selected leading entries will also undergo the People's Choice judging at the RESNA 2008 Conference in Washington, DC on June 26-30th, 2008. Here, conference attendees subjectively critique the designs.


Notification to entrants of the entries selected for final judging at the RESNA Conference will be made no later than June 10th, 2008.

Prizes will be distributed as follows:

First prize: $800
Second prize: $600
Third prize: $300
People's choice: $300

Winners will be announced during the annual RESNA Conference at the Awards Ceremony. Contestants do not need to be present to win. Notification to entrants of the winning designs and prize money awards will be made no later than August 1st, 2008.

Additional Information

If you have any questions, contact Jon Pearlman.

Additional information is available on the International Appropriate Technology (SIG-17) website.

The International Appropriate Technology Design Competition is a project of RESNA SIG-17, the Special Interest Group on International Appropriate Technology.

The competition is sponsored by:

RESNA (The Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America)
1700 N Moore St., Suite 1540 Voice 703/524-6686
Arlington, VA  22209-1903 Fax 703/524-6630
Website Email

BlueSky Designs Inc.
2637 27th Ave, South, Suite 209 Voice 888/724-7002
Minneapolis, MN  55406 Fax 612/724-7004
Website Email

AireRx Healthcare, LLC
1843 Air Lane Dr. Voice 615/244-3327
Nashville, TN  37210 Fax 615/244-7745
Website Email

Entry Form - 98Kb PDF file