Leading experts in assistive technologies set for 2021 Inclusion Summit

'Assistive technology is the bridge between exclusion and inclusion. Access to high-quality assistive products is a pre-condition for most Para athletes to compete and win' 27 Oct 2021
Inclusion Summit 2021

Four of the world’s foremost experts in assistive technologies have been confirmed to participate at the 2021 Inclusion Summit which will be held virtually on 2 and 3 December 2021.

On the second day of the 2021 Inclusion Summit, powered by International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and World Academy of Sport (WAoS) with the support of the International Disability Alliance, a panel discussion focussing on the role of assistive technology (AT) as a vehicle to drive the social inclusion of persons with disabilities will take place.

Expert panellists set to take part are Jon Lomøy, Board Chair of ATscale: the Global Partnership for Assistive Technology; Luc De Witte, President of The Global Alliance of Assistive Technology Organisations (GAATO); Chapal Khasnabis, Head of the Access to Assistive Technology and Medical Devices Unit at World Health Organization; and Vicki Austin, CEO of the Global Disability Innovation (GDI) Hub.

During the half hour session, the panellists will discuss why assistive technologies are central to our current global challenge and why assistive technologies for sports and sports for assistive technologies are a win-win combination.

Khasnabis said: “Assistive technology is the bridge between exclusion and inclusion. Access to high-quality assistive products is a pre-condition for most Para athletes to compete and win. The positive image of Para athletes and the demand of high-quality assistive products makes the assistive technology sector better and better with every Paralympics.”

Austin, who was previously responsible for the London 2012 Paralympic Legacy Programme, said: “GDI Hub has led AT2030 since 2018 to find out ‘what works’ on AT access in more than 35+ countries reaching 22 million people through 70 partners so far.

“AT2030 was designed to build on what we learned in delivering disability inclusion for London 2012 legacy, that is: success comes through community leadership with political backing. 900 million AT users without AT know the direct and damaging consequences of lack of access and our Paralympians show what is possible with the right team and the right tech. Let’s be the ‘team behind the team’ of persons with disabilities around the world and take the tough political decisions necessary to take the gold medal on AT access before Paris 2024.”

The panel discussion on assistive technology is one of 16 top-level virtual sessions planned for the 2021 Inclusion Summit which will bring together a stellar line-up of nearly 40 world class speakers from civil society, business, development, sport, entertainment, and assistive technologies. Organisations set to be represented at the event include the United Nations, UN Human Rights, International Disability Alliance, International Paralympic Committee, Special Olympics, World Health Organisations and The Valuable 500.

Through a mixture of keynote addresses, panel discussions and presentations, speakers will focus on the theme: 'Building Back Better: Sport as a tool to place persons with disabilities at the heart of the inclusion agenda'.  During two half day sessions, two key areas will be explored:

  • Promotion of social inclusion and human rights
  • How sport advance the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Amongst the other speakers already confirmed for the 2021 Inclusion Summit are: Andrew Parsons, IPC President; Ana Lucia Arellano, International Disability Alliance Chairperson; David Evangelista, Special Olympics European Eurasia President; Facundo Chavez, Human Rights and Disability Advisor, UN Human Rights; Stephen Frost, Founder and CEO of Included; Chris Solly, WAoS Managing Director; and Keely Cat-Wells, CEO of C Talent.

More speakers will be announced in due course.

The full agenda for December’s event can be found here.


The target audience for the 2021 Inclusion Summit includes a wide range of organisations. This includes policy makers, government, human rights and SDG focussed organisations, NGOs, international development agencies, sport bodies, businesses with a passion for inclusion, event organisers, universities, think tanks.


To register to participate in the event on 2 and 3 December, please visit here.

The event will start each day at 14:00 CET through to 18:00 CET.

The registration for the two-day event is EUR 25.