'Hello Jenny' wins 'Smart City' grant!

The 'Smart City' grant is a budget that the winning project receives for the implementation of their concept. Flemish minister Homans decided to work with a grant from 2018 on because it's important to devise a smart concept as well as a smart implementation.

'Hello Jenny', a voice interface, was created within the 'City of People' project, where the city of Ghent, Ghent University, imec and Digipolis Ghent seek innovative solutions together to provide a concrete answer to complex societal challenges. One of those challenges is social isolation and loneliness among elderly.

The research team developed a voice interface, 'Hello Jenny', for elderly. This interface allows elderly people to easily ask for help or a visit from a student. It's a smart speaker in a 'wooden box'. The innovation isn't only in the speaker, but in the whole concept behind the 'wooden box'. The pilot project showed that 'Hello Jenny' makes asking for help more accessible. Many elderly people prefer not to admit that they need a visit or help. In this case it's 'Hello Jenny' or the smart speaker that asks them. The fear of disturbing the buddy (student) also disappears, because with 'Hello Jenny' the buddy chooses when he or she answers via Facebook Messenger.
The project previously won the UGent "WOW award", it's an ode to science and, in particular, what science means to people. With this, Ghent University looked at the research that isn't only being done at the University today, but at all the groundbreaking work scientists have been done throughout history at various institutions.
Congratulations to our research team Bas Baccarne, Ben Robaeyst, Jeroen Bourgonjon and Prof. dr. Lieven de Marez and all project partners involved: the City of Ghent, OCMW Ghent, Digipolis Ghent, imec.livinglabs, imec.APT and imec-IDLab-UGent!


BRON: Mathias De Clercq
BRON: Mathias De Clercq