i-CREATe 2007 Welcome Message
Assistive Technology (AT) and Rehabilitation engineering are the systematic application of scientific and engineering principles to improve the quality of life for people with disabilities. Through the providing of enhancements to or changed methods of interacting with the technology needed to accomplish tasks that were formerly impossible or difficult to achieved, AT promotes independence through the use of assistive, adaptive, and rehabilitative devices and the appropriate process used in selecting, locating, and using them. An AT device can be loosely defined as "any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities". It has been long observed and reported that the use of AT devices by people with disabilities has increase vocational and independent living opportunities.
The people working in this traditionally neglected field are generally known as AT practitioners, Therapists (Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists, Speech Language Pathologists, etc.), Rehab Technologists, and/or Rehabilitation Engineers. These professionals have long provided AT to people with disabilities, playing a vital role in the removal of barriers toward employability and independent living, and enhanced the employability, education, communication, daily functioning, and recreational activities of people with disabilities.
The importance of AT and Rehabilitation Engineering are well recognized and undeniable. Consulting with international and regional experts/professionals, there are common consensus that Asia lacks a professional platform in the field of Assistive and Rehabilitative Technology to provide information exchanges, knowledge-sharing, networking, publications of researches, and professional interactions, etc. It is with these goals of providing a comprehensive, international convention, where all technologies across all ages; disabilities; levels of education and training; employment; and independent living can be addressed, the inaugural international Convention for Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology (i-CREATe) has been initiated.
i-CREATe is currently being reviewed as one of the signatory to the Tokushima Agreement and i-CREATe has been accepted as the sister conference by the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA); RESNA is also the Technical Sponsor for i-CREATe 2007.
The Singapore Therapeutic, Assistive & Rehabilitative Technologies Centre also known as START Centre, and the Thailand’s National Electronics and Computer Technology Centre (NECTEC), are the two main organizations that are jointly organizing i-CREATe 2007. This event is managed by the SingEx Group (Singex Exhibitions Pte. Ltd.). The event will be held at the Singapore National Library Board (NLB) Building, and the Hotel Intercontinental, from 23rd – 26th April 2007.
The inaugural i-CREATe 2007 will be formally launched by Her Royal Highness (HRH) Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, Kingdom of Thailand, and Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan, Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS), Republic of Singapore, on 24th April 2007. This is the FIRST such joint efforts by the two countries to promote Assistive Technology (AT) for people with disabilities in Southeast Asia.
i-CREATe 2007 aims to provide a, previously lacking, platform for technical exchanges and exhibitions on the advanced technologies, equipments, techniques and materials applied in the field of Assistive & Rehabilitative Technology (ART). This platform is meant for rehabilitation and education professionals working with or implementing use of Assistive Technology (AT) including Suppliers, Technologists, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists, Rehabilitation Engineers, Educators, End-users, Caregivers, Governmental Officials, Policy Planning Staffs, Researchers, and Academicians, and others interested in AT.
We have assembled a comprehensive programme of 4 plenary sessions, more than 16 workshops (including two runs of the popular Fundamentals Course in Assistive Technology, jointly organized with RESNA), and over 60 presentations covering the three major tracks of rehabilitation engineering and assistive technology: Policy, Practice and Research.
We trust that i-CREATe 2007 will provide you with excellent opportunities to network and to acquire new knowledge in the field of AT and Rehabilitation Engineering.
We look forward to meeting with you in sunny island of Singapore!
Mr. Zen Koh
Dr. Ang Wei Tech
Ms Wantanee Phantachat