Monday, 31 October 2016

Professor Luc de Witte joins CATCH with big plans for the future

On Monday 3rd October we were delighted to welcome Professor Luc de Witte to the CATCH team.

With his relevant background and vast experience, Luc is the perfect fit with the mission and ambition of CATCH. Before making the step to Sheffield, Luc worked as a Professor of Technology in Care at Zuyd University of Applied Sciences in Heerlen and at Maastricht University, both in the Netherlands. Luc was also Director of the Centre of Expertise on Innovative Care and Technology (EIZT), a large innovation network in the southern Netherlands.  Luc trained as a medical doctor but has always worked as a researcher in the field of rehabilitation and long term care, with all his research aimed at innovation in care. In recent years, Luc has focused on the possibilities of technology to support people with disabilities in their daily lives and professionals in their challenge to offer optimal care and support to people.

As our Keynote speaker at the October CATCH Networking Lunch held on Friday 14th October, Luc presented himself to CATCH staff and the wider network, sharing his reasons for his move from the Netherlands to Sheffield as well as his vision for CATCH. Speaking at the event, Luc informed us that: “The main reason for moving to The University of Sheffield is that it yields an enormous potential to develop, evaluate and implement innovative technologies that can play a major role in creating a sustainable healthcare system and in supporting people with disabilities or chronic conditions.

“This challenge is shared by all Western societies and requires international research and development work, irrespective of political ideas about Brexit. The research necessary in this field is also relevant to developing countries, which adds a global perspective to the ambition of CATCH.”

Researchers and organisations in the field of assistive technologies will have an additional opportunity to meet Luc at the Technology for Independence (T4I) conference in November. We’re excited to have him as our plenary speaker at the T4I conference to be held in Sheffield on Monday 28th November 2016.

Professor Luc de Witte will be working on assistive technology research with a special interest in the possibilities of care robotics, and on technologies that can support self management of people with chronic conditions. In addition to this, he will also continue his research in the 'Health in Slums Alliance', a network in India he has set up over the last few years.

Anyone who is interested in meeting Luc to discuss possible collaborations is more than welcome to make an appointment. Please get in touch with Richard Simmonds to organise this.

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