Zero Project Call for Nominations 2023

We are no longer accepting nominations for #ZeroCall23.

However, you find more information regarding the process of nomination here

For an in-depth discussion of the research topics for #ZeroCall23, please continue reading. 


#ZeroCall23: Independent Living & Political Participation, and ICT

About the call for nominations

The Zero Project Call for Nominations 2023 (#ZeroCall23) is focused on Independent Living & Political Participation, and ICT. It calls on inclusive, innovative, and scalable solutions from around the world to submit their nominations, which will be evaluated in a multi-step process that includes peer-review and voting. A select number of solutions will receive a Zero Project Award and support through the Zero Project Network.

The Zero Project encourages nominations from all sectors of society – policy makers, startups, academia, civil society, businesses – and especially, those relating to multiple or severe disabilities, humanitarian action, gender equality, the arts, sexual orientation, psychosocial disabilities, or other multiple disadvantaged groups.

Quick links

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#ZeroCall Info Sheet

Accessible PDF with the most important information in several languages

#ZeroCall23 in Easy Language

Videos and Info Sheet

Topic and subtopic definitions

Understand what is in and out of scope for #ZeroCall23

Why become a Zero Project Awardee?

Benefits of a successful #ZeroCall23 nomination

Download the #ZeroCall info sheet in your language

Did you know?

The #ZeroCall23 Info Sheet is also available in Easy Language:

Download the accessible PDF

Please note that the Zero Project Call for Nominations 2023 has closed on July 3, 2022.

The #ZeroCall23 info sheet will provide the most important information on the call for nominations in English, Arabic, French, German, Russian, SpanishItalian and Japanese. To download the info sheet in accessible PDF format, simply click on the links below:


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#ZeroCall23 in Easy Language

Do you have questions?

Send us an email, we are happy to answer your questions about #ZeroCall23:

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What is #ZeroCall23?

We are looking for solutions from all over the world! The topics are: Living an independent life, participating in politics, using telecommunication.

You can download a PDF with the most important information by clicking on this button:

Download the #ZeroCall23 Info Sheet

Here is a short video on what #ZeroCall23 is about:

  • YouTube video

    #ZeroCall23 in Easy Language

About this year's topics and subtopics

Click to jump to the respective topic definitions:

The Zero Project Call for Nomination is based on a research-driven approach that aims to identify, curate, and share inclusive solutions, as intended and encouraged by Article 32 of the United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). In order to achieve this objective, the Zero Project engages with a worldwide cross-sectoral network of innovators, decision-makers, and disability experts. Both the research and selection processed involve and rely on the expertise of people with lived experience of disabilities.

The #ZeroCall23 topic of Independent Living & Political Participation, and ICT relate to a range of UN CRPD articles, which will be referenced in each of the individual sections below for your reference.

To ensure that your nomination falls within the scope of #ZeroCall23, please read through the topic and subtopic definitions carefully.

Please note: solutions submitted for the ICT category do not have to address the criteria outlined for Independent Living & Political Participation. ICT is to be understood as a standalone topic.

Independent Living

Empowered choice for persons with disabilities where to live and with whom is realised through access to supported services. Projects in this topic also help them to integrate with their communities.

UN CRPD Article 19 emphasises that persons with disabilities have the right to choose where and with whom they live on equal basis with others. With their unique needs, access to supported services must be present in order to contribute to respective community.

Independent Living is a dynamic process of creating freedom of choice for persons with disabilities, and  eliminate artificial barriers towards full and equal participation in society. This includes having control where and whom to live with and how to productively contribute in the community. For this to be realised, availability of information, financial resources and peer group support systems must be provided for them instead of letting them depend on institutions to support their needs (Source:

This topic relates to the following UN CRPD articles:

For definitions of the subtopics and to view examples of what types of solutions would be accepted or rejected as part of #ZeroCall23, click on these cards:

  • Deinstitutionalization

    Deinstitutionalization is the process of transfer from segregated facilities to living environments of one´s own choice. Zero Project is looking for nominations that support this process and promote alternative living arrangements.

  • Supported Living

    Supported Living enables persons with disabilities to live in their communities of choice, with the support they need to participate in every-day life. This includes living in their own homes, working, and community activities.

  • Early Childhood Intervention

    Early Childhood Intervention encompasses various support measures concerning children with disabilities from very young age to the start of formal education. Nominations shall be family and/or personal centered practices or policies.

  • Assistive Technology

    Assistive Technology offers suitable support for persons with disabilities, facilitates living within the community, and includes mobility aids, devices, and ICT. Nominations shall offer solutions for all forms of disabilities.

  • Personal Assistance

    Personal Assistance provides support services based on a needs assessment. Choice and control over one’s own personal assistance allows for empowerment and inclusion. We welcome various service models, including personal budgets.

  • Self-Employment and Micro Finance

    Self-Employment and Micro Finance are important steps to gain financial independence by earning one's own income. Nominations shall include practical examples as well as training and financial support programs.

  • Moving away from Sheltered Employment

    We are looking for rights-based solutions to sheltered workshops, providing employment for persons with disabilities in an inclusive manner, allowing individuals to obtain meaningful and fairly compensated work.

  • From Guardianship to Supported Decision Making

    To enjoy legal capacity on an equal basis, the Convention foresees expression of opinion in multiple ways. We are looking for nominations that are based on a person’s strengths and skills as well as on their will and rights.

  • Inclusion and Rights Based Approaches

    Persons with disabilities have a legal claim to participate in all aspects of society. Maximizing the involvement in this process means self-representation, the foundation of DPOs, and strategic litigation to name some examples.

Political Participation

Expressing opinions on issues of concern through voting processes, consultations, dialogues or demonstrations of different forms and representing themselves is a right of persons with disabilities according to UN CRPD Articles 21 and 29.

Political participation refers to the capacity of a person to make a stand on issues that affect them through voting processes, consultations, dialogues or demonstrations. Articles 21 and 29 of the CRPD stipulate that persons with disabilities have the right to express their opinons and participate in political and public life. This includes both their right to vote and be voted for during elections as well as the protection of their votes and their identity as voters.

This topic relates to the following UN CRPD articles:

For definitions of the subtopics and to view examples of what types of solutions would be accepted or rejected as part of #ZeroCall23, click on these cards:

  • Political Leadership/Self-Representation

    Persons with disabilities need adequate political representation on community, state, and federal level in political parties as well as in political, public, and private institutions in order to bring their issues to the frontline.

  • Participation in Public Life

    Persons with disabilities have the right to express their concerns in a public space through different means of communication. Government agencies are also expected to create platforms for inclusive dialogue.

  • Voting Policies and Procedures

    The Convention underlines that voting procedures, facilities and materials should be appropriate, accessible, and easy to understand and use for all, especially, persons with disabilities. We welcome nominations making voting accessible.

  • Voter and Civic Education

    Inclusive campaigning means educating every voter, persons with disabilities included, to make a rational choice regardless of their literacy, social status, or gender. We welcome nominations that feature inclusive voter education.

  • Access to Justice

    Access to Justice is an important step for persons with disabilities to have an equal basis with non-disabled peers. Nominations shall include support provisions, appropriate accommodation as well as training of personnel involved.

Information and Communication Technologies – ICT

Information and Communication Technology has become very important for persons with disabilities. We have therefore decided to include this topic in each call for nominations.

Solutions that are submitted for the ICT topic do not have to relate to the other topics (Independent Living & Political Participation). Instead, we encourage nominations across the whole range of ICT, and have introduced 12 subtopics:

  • Gaming Solutions

    Gamification and gaming solutions have become important tools in non-formal educational environments. We welcome technologies that have relevance for persons with disabilities.

  • Translation/Conversation Tools

    Persons with speech impairments of persons with intellectual disabilities often face obstacles to communicate or comprehend. We are looking for solutions that overcome these obstacles and also use artificial intelligence.

  • Orientation Systems

    Online maps often lack accessibility features and are only of limited use for persons with disabilities. Zero Projects looks forward to nominations that increase the mobility of persons with disabilities through technology.

  • Community and Knowledge Platform

    The availability of online information has increased the need for organizational tools to focus research and to increase efficiency.  We welcome nominations of community tools with relevance for persons with disabilities.

  • Digital Library

    The recent pandemic has underlined the need for online information that is accessible for everyone. We welcome solutions that make library content available for persons with different disabilities like visual or hearing impairments.

  • Computer Steering Technologies

    Persons with disabilities often require special devices or software that supports computer navigation. We are welcoming solutions that show new technologies that facilitate the use of any form of computer.

  • Mobile Services and Smartphone Apps

    Mobile phones have become the preferred communication tool for many persons with and without disabilities. Zero Project is looking for mobile services and apps that have support relevance for persons with disabilities.

  • Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning / Big Data Solutions

    Artificial Intelligence has become a standard feature in many applications and technologies. We are looking for solutions that benefit persons with disabilities and ensure that the use of AI does not discriminate against them.

  • Social Media

    Social Media is the relevant communication and information tool for many persons. We would like to receive nominations that demonstrate the benefit and support for persons with disabilities.

  • Internet of Things

    Smart household appliances, connected to phones and the internet will make daily routines and tasks easier and more efficient. Zero Project is looking for nominations that highlight the benefits for persons with disabilities.

  • 3D Printing

    The availability of spare parts or replacements is sometimes an important barrier for persons with disabilities. 3D printing can not only overcome these barriers but can offer the possibility of new, improved products.

  • Robotics and Automated Machinery

    Robots have been invented some time ago, but their relevance is still undoubted. We are looking forward to receiving solutions that feature the support of persons with disabilities.

Why become a Zero Project Awardee?

"Zero Project has created a community of friends who are glad and ready to help each other at any time. I see the Zero Project as a big convening power focused on innovating continuously and adapting to change."

Yetnebersh Nigussie, Children with Disabilities Program Specialist at UNICEF

Among hundreds of ZeroCall nominations, a panel of experts and peer-reviewers will evaluate, scrutinize, provide feedback, and select outstanding practices and policies – the Zero Project Awardees.

In addition to international recognition, the renowned Zero Project Award provides numerous benefits to its Awardees, such as:

  • Each Awardee will be invited to present at the annual Zero Project Conference at the United Nations (UN) Offices in Vienna, Austria.
  • Awardees receive access to the Zero Project Network, which includes leading organizations, such as the UN, governments, the business sector, international funding agencies, foundations or globally active non-government organizations.
  • Moreover, additional opportunities present themselves for Awardees that intend to scale internationally, or to replicate their solutions.

To view previous Awardees from around the world, go to:

Zero Project Database