In the light of the COVID19 pandemic and with the aim to support a disability-inclusive response to the crisis, the International Disability Alliance (IDA) has launched the IDA COVID-19 webpage to share the most recent updates and resources as they become available.

The IDA COVID-19 webpage includes key recommendations towards a Disability-Inclusive COVID19 Response as well a compilation of useful resources related to COVID-19 and the disability movement.

If you have any updates on how COVID 19 is affecting persons with disabilities in your area of work or want to share any good practices, send in your resources by contacting IDA inclusive humanitarian adviser, Ms Elham Youssefian via emailing

Stay safe and healthy!


Picture showing the Zero Project Team in a Video Conference.


After a successful #ZeroCon20 we have been very busy with our wrap up. In the coming weeks, you will find a lot of new information on all our social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Check out especially our YouTube channel where you find the whole #ZeroCon20 that you can now watch session by session. Like most of you, we are finding ourselves in a complete new work environment, mostly working from home, and are staying connected with tools like Zoom – greetings from all of us!

We have already kick-started our new research cycle and are focusing on our next Call for Nominations on Employment – which will be announced mid-May as usual, and are preparing a whole lot of exciting new additions to the Zero Project in the next few months!


Stay tuned for more news and more importantly: stay home and be safe!


Your Zero Project Team






Gruppenfoto des Parlamentevents 2020

© Parlamentsdirektion/Thomas Topf


Im Vorfeld der Zero Project Konferenz 2020 fand am Dienstag, 18. Februar 2020, die parlamentarische Veranstaltung : Bildung – Inklusion – Digitalisierung auf Initiative des Nationalratspräsidenten Wolfgang Sobotka, der Essl Foundation und der Sinnbildungsstifter statt. Über 200 TeilnehmerInnen diskutierten technische Innovationen, wie Livox, Orcam, Sonokids, Speechgear und das Projekt Inklusive Bildung.

Hier geht’s zum Highlight Video!

Hier geht’s zu den Fotos der Veranstaltung!

Large group of people on and in front of a stage smiling for teh camera in front of two Zero Project logos.
Large group of people on and in front of a stage smiling for teh camera in front of two Zero Project logos.

©Pepo Schuster,

Vienna 24th February 2020.

The second global Zero Project call for nominations on the topic of education for people with disabilities resulted in 468 nominations from 106 countries. The most innovative submissions were presented at the 9th Zero Project Conference which took place from 19th to 21st February 2020. More than 800 people from over 80 countries took part at the United Nations in Vienna, Austria, to discuss, exhibit and present models that support inclusive Education.

Over 30 conference sessions discussed inclusive education

Throughout the three days, more than 30 sessions, including presentations of innovations and specialised forums, discussed the many sub-themes of inclusive education. All sessions were recorded and will be shared on the Zero Project YouTube channel in the coming weeks.

Over 80 projects collected their awards

More than 80 Awardees were in Vienna in person to collect their award from Martin Essl at the dedicated award evening and gave their backstage comments to the waiting camera crews.

The videos were online on the Zero Project Facebook page within 24 hours of the ceremony and have been watched more than 60,000 times!


Kicking off the Zero Project Conference activities, five winners of the Zero Project Award had the opportunity on Tuesday to present their initiatives at the Austrian Parliament, a joint event organised by the President of the National Council Wolfgang Sobotka, the Essl Foundation and the Sinnbildungsstiftung on the topic of education, inclusion and digitalisation.

Zero Project Impact Transfer

This year for the third time, alongside our partners Fundación Descúbreme and Ashoka, we ran the Zero Project-Impact Transfer programme. Ten projects from nine countries are participating in this 6-month programme, consisting of training, mentoring and networking support to help them prepare to replicate their innovations in other countries and contexts. You can find out more about this year’s participants at

Youth Participation

For the first time the Zero Project officially introduced youth participation to the conference. Over the course of three days,12 youth advocates joined us on stage at the award ceremony and also played an integral part in our social media activities. In addition to that, the youth advocates discussed best practices and shared concepts, experiences and tools that have worked to increase Inclusive Education.

 Africa Forum, Start-Up Forum, ITU Forum and much more…

Among many other exciting sessions during the 3-day conference was the Africa Forum, which presented several successful inclusive education initiatives working in sub-Saharan Africa and discussed the challenges and opportunities for scaling and replicating these.

At the Start-Up Forum, one of the fast-paced sessions on Thursday, entrepreneurs pitched their technological solutions to a panel of experts from the corporate and impact investment world, who then provided thorough questioning and constructive feedback.

The ITU Forums interactive panel discussion explored the factors needed to build an ecosystem supporting innovative ICT accessibility solutions and the challenges and opportunities facing accessible ICT solutions.

Performances, Movies, Yoga, Light for the World/Bank Austria

Inclusive dance performances, an inclusive sunrise yoga session and a short movie provided diverse entertainment for the conference participants.

On Friday evening, everyone who still had energy left was invited to enjoy the closing event, a presentation of the HerAbilities Awardees, hosted by Light for the World together with the Zero Project and supported by UniCredit Bank Austria.


Stay tuned over the next few weeks while we bring you all the best bits from the Conference, with clips, photos and sessions soon to be available online!


For further information, please contact:


Michael Fembek

Zero Project, Director

Essl Foundation


Pages of the Zero Project Report

We are proud to introduce to you the Zero Project Report 2020!


After more than 9 months of extensive research, analysis and reporting, we are delighted to bring you our latest annual report, on this year’s topic Education.


Inside this report, you will find factsheets of the 75 Innovative Practices, and 11 Innovative Policies from 56 countries that support inclusive education solutions for persons with disabilities, along with personalised life stories from many of the projects. The report also introduces 10 new participants of the Zero Project Impact Transfer, in association with Ashoka, where projects are prepared for replication around the world, plus a section on the legal indicators by the WORLD Policy Analysis Center.


The report also includes a summary in easy language.


All the themes, topics and projects within this report will be discussed during the Zero Project Conference from 19th to 21st February 2020 at the United Nations in Vienna. You can watch the action from the Conference on the Zero Project website.



The Signature Employment Grants support innovative solutions with potential for public or private replication.

The 2020 grant requests for proposals with a special interest in projects that address the intersection of race, class, gender, disability and poverty within the framework of helping individuals with disabilities obtain employment or re-enter the job market following injury.

Partnerships across sectors, such as public/private collaborations with economic development organizations, banks and municipalities are, particularly of interest.

So, if you are interested click here for more information and apply until February 14th, 2020!

We are thrilled to announce that the factsheets of our Zero Project Innovative Practices and Policies 2020 are online now!

We present you with factsheets from 75 Innovative Practices and 11 Innovative Policies from 56 countries that support persons with disabilities on our 2020 topic of education.

These projects cover a range of topics including, assistive technology in schools and universities, inclusive education systems in low and middle-income countries, early childhood and pre-school programmes, legal and rights-based approaches to inclusive education, inclusive education programmes in museums and cultural institutions and many, many more.

Again, huge congratulations to every single one of these incredible organisations. We’re immensely honoured to be able to promote your amazing work!

The 2020 Employment for All Award aims to promote strategies that facilitate the employment of persons with disabilities on the open labour market; provide them with equal opportunities to access gainful employment and enable them to gain greater control over their independence in terms of employment and financial stability.

For this, 10 promising practices will be selected and published in the 2020 Employment for All Booklet before inviting 6 nominees to EASPD and LADAPT’s “Road to Employment for Persons with Disabilities” Conference in Paris on 4th-5th May 2020, where they will be given the opportunity to present their system, model, scheme to over 250 conference participants. Two winners of the Employment for All Award will be announced during the conference. Don’t miss the opportunity to apply until the 17th of January 2020

Find out more about the award and the application process on the 2020 Employment for All Awards Application Form



It’s that time of year again. The Zero Project will take a little break and enjoy the holidays. And so should you too! We’ll be back feeling refreshed and ready to tackle final preparations for #ZeroCon20! Wishing you all a wonderful holiday season and see you in 2020!

Yes, it’s this time of the year again!

We are delighted to announce the Zero Project Innovative Practices and Policies 2020!

We present you 75 Innovative Practices and 11 Innovative Policies from 56 countries that support persons with disabilities on our 2020 topic of education. We are overwhelmed with the range and quality of the projects and are pleased to bring you solutions from all around the world.

More detailed information including a link to each awardee’s factsheet will be published on the Zero Project website and released in January 2020.

These projects cover a range of topics including, assistive technology in schools and universities, inclusive education systems in low and middle-income countries, early childhood and pre-school programmes, legal and rights-based approaches to inclusive education, inclusive education programmes in museums and cultural institutions and many, many more.

Please have a look and explore the projects yourself. The full list is below:




  • Canales – Videolibros enSeña


  • Bridge of Hope – SMILE for Children


  • RIDBC (Royal Institute of Deaf and Blind Children) – UEB Online
  • Sonokids – Ballyland Educational Apps
  • University of Sydney – Centre for Disability Studies – Uni 2 Beyond


  • KHM Museumsverband – ARCHES
  • Pädagogische Hochschule Salzburg – BLuE University Programme


  • DRRA (Disabled Rehabilitiation & Research Association) – Learn for Life
  • Save the Children International – HOPE
  • YPSA (Young Power in Social Action)


  • Livox International LLC
  • Mais Diferenças – Projeto Brincar
  • Rodrigo Mendes Institute – DIVERSA
  • Rodrigo Mendes Institute, UNICEF, and the FC Barcelona Foundation – Open Doors to Inclusion
  • Univali University – Game Design by Children


  • Association of Shared Learning ELA – One School for All


  • educlick


  • Rick Hansen Foundation – Accessibility Certification


  • Universidad de Andrés Bello – Socio-labour training programme


  • Chinese University of Hong Kong, Centre for Sign Linguistics & Deaf Studies – Sign Bilingualism and Co-enrolment in Deaf Education


  • Universidad Politécnica Salesiana


  • Felm – Social and Educational Programme for the Deaf


  • The Finnish Service Foundation for People with an Intellectual Disability (KVPS) – On the Verge of Adulthood


  • Capito Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – New Ways to Art
  • PIKSL by In der Gemeinde leben gGmbH – PIKSL Mobil


  • SciFY – Games for the Blind

Greece and other European Countries

  • Foundation of Research and Technology – Hellas (FORTH), the European Parents’ Association, Puzzle S.E., Center for Specialpædagogiske Børnetilbud, Internationaler Bund Südwest, and Oslo Metropolitan University, International Parents Alliance – ELPIDA (E‐Learning Platform for Intellectual Disability Awareness)


  • ADISA – Inclusive Education Programme


  • Amar Seva Sangam
  • CHAI – Catholic Health Association of India – Grassroots Comics
  • Light for the World – RAISE
  • Nayi Disha Resource Centre
  • Universal Design Centre, BNCA University – Opening Minds to Universal Design


  • Universitas Brawijaya, Centre for Disability Studies and Services


  • UrAbility


  • Access Israel – Training for Inclusive Teaching
  • AKIM Israel
  • Israel Elwyn –  Creating a future
  • Ministry of Health of Israel and the Israeli Association of Community Centres – Amitim program in Community Centres


  • Al Hussein Society – Leaving no one behind
  • Arab Episcopal School Irbid


  • Psychoanalytic Association – Ed-Recovery Academy


  • inABLE
  • Signs Media Kenya Limited – Signs TV
  • The Action Foundation


  • Sightsavers


  • The Trust for the Americas – DIA Inclusive Innovation Lab


  • United Nations Children’s Fund – DAISY Textbooks


  • ADPP – Centre of Expertise for Inclusive Education


  • Sama Nepal


  • Special Talent Exchange Programme


  • RET Americas


  • Save the Children Philippines – KASALI

Russian Federation

  • All-Russian Society of Disabled People – Certification in Accessibility Expertise

Saudi Arabia

  • King Abdulaziz University – Empowering Students with Disabilities Initiative


  • Humanity & Inclusion Senegal


  • Mathematical Society of Serbia
  • University of Belgrade, Faculty of Architecture

South Africa

  • University of Cape Town – Inclusion for Social Justice

South Sudan

  • Light for the World


  • Fundación Dales la Palabra – Tres Olivos School
  • Fundación ONCE – Open and Accessible Universal Design Training Courses
  • Fundación ONCE – Braitico (Braille learning tool)


  • Madrasa Early Childhood Programme Zansibar
  • State University of Zanzibar – Teacher Training in Inclusive Education


  • Engelsiz Erisim Derneği – Barrier-free Distance Education

United Arab Emirates

  • Manzil Center – PRIDE

United Kingdom

  • ENABLE Scotland – Stepping Up

United States

  • Microsoft Corporation – Immersive Reader
  • Houston Community College – VAST Academy
  • SpeechGear – Streamer
  • Syracuse University – Disability Law and Policy Program
  • Taft Community College – The Transition to Independent Living programme

United States and Globally

  • Benetech – Bookshare


  • CBM (Christoffel-Blindenmission) – Inclusive Educational Centres in Zimbabwe



Australia, State of Queensland

  • Department of Education – Inclusive Education Policy


  • Department of Education, City of Vienna (Bildungsdirektion fuer Wien) – Inclusive Education for children with autism

Canada – Province of New Brunswick

  • Department of Education and Early Childhood Development – Provincial Autism Training

Dominican Republic

  • National Institute for Comprehensive Early Childhood Care


  • Department of Children and Youth Affairs – The Access and Inclusion Model (AIM)


  • Ministry of Health – Supported education policy for adult people with mental health issues in the community


  • Italian Ministry of Education, Universities, and Research – Law 107/2015 – Good School Reform Act; Legislative decree 66/2017


  • Ministry of Education, Arts, and Culture – Inclusive Education policy


  • Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology – Nepal Inclusive Education Policy (2016)


  • Inclusive Education Unit in the Ministry of Education, Sports, and Culture – Inclusive Education Policy for Students Living with Disability

United States

  • US Department of Labor – Pathways to Careers Programme