The EU Joint Programme – Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) will shortly launch a multinational networking activity for expert Working Groups on: “Use of digital technologies in neurodegenerative disease research and clinical practice”.

Digital technologies have taken a central position in peoples’ everyday lives, e.g. by managing daily routines, offering timely information and navigation or allowing boundless communication. They have also made their way into health and social care research and practice, e.g. by offering automated data processing and analysis, algorithms facilitating human efforts or tracking people’s health and physical status. Beside the impressive features offered already today, technological advancements are rapid and temporarily erratic, e.g. with regard to the conceivable roll-out of virtual reality and artificial intelligence. Assessing the impact of such cutting-edge technologies on health and social care research and services often generates a high level of uncertainty. In addition, the fast progression makes it complicated to implement them in research and in the care of patients. However, both fields may potentially benefit from making use of cutting-edge digital technologies. This specifically relates to neurodegenerative diseases, where patients require enhanced levels of support and scientists strive to unravel the functioning of the brain, which is the most complex organ in the human body. The use of advanced digital technologies for the diagnosis, disease modelling, treatment and care has the potential to improve life for people with neurodegenerative diseases.

To address this challenge, JPND will launch a call for leading scientists in the field to establish community-led Working Groups dedicated to discuss the use of digital technologies in research and care on neurodegenerative diseases and to assess their future impact. The work should result in a report highlighting for example the risks and opportunities of a specific technique as well as the relevant research needs to be addressed in the near future.

This call will not fund direct research activities. Instead, Working Groups will be funded for up to 12 months with approximately 50.000€ each to compensate for their expenses (e.g. meetings and travel costs). International and multi-disciplinary composition of the Working Groups should be envisaged, including the necessary expertise from outside the field of neurodegenerative diseases. However, the coordinator of a Working Group must be from an institution being eligible for one of the funding organisations intending to support this call:

  • France, French National Research Agency (ANR)*
  • Germany, Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)*
  • Ireland, Health Research Board (HRB)*
  • Italy, Ministry of Health (IT-MOH)*
  • Netherlands, The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Dev. (ZonMW)*
  • Norway, The Research Council of Norway (RCN)*
  • United Kingdom, Medical Research Council (MRC) as part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)*

* Decision pending

This call is expected to launch in November 2023 with a likely submission deadline at mid of December 2023. Further details will be provided with the launch of the call.

Please Note:

All information regarding future JPND call topics is subject to change. Final call information will be published on the JPND website (