Skip to content

The DIZH Innovation program supports nine projects to overcome the last mile

Researchers in the Canton of Zurich are responding to immediate challenges with measures that can be implemented quickly. With the Call for Rapid Action proposals, the DIZH supports the realisation of innovative solutions. These are based on interdisciplinary cooperation between the UZH, ZHAW, ZHdK and PHZH, with the involvement of practice partners. A jury consisting of 12 specialists from the participating universities selected nine projects from 33 applications, which will be funded with a total of CHF 1.2 million – half from the DIZH special credit and half from the participating universities’ own contributions. The projects introduce new tools in education, health care and the world of work, respond to challenges posed by the Covid 19 pandemic or offer decision-making support for ethical problems and climate change risk analysis. What the projects have in common is their high level of practical relevance. Since already tested prototypes are available or the projects build on completed research findings, the Call for Rapid Action proposals specifically supports these projects in overcoming the last mile. This means that the projects can be implemented within one year. 

The nine approved projects in brief

AUTODIDACT: Automated Video Data Annotation to Empower the ICU Cockpit Platform for Clinical Decision Support

The software generates automated annotations such as patient movements and staff interventions from video files captured by the ICU Cockpit IT platform at the hospital bedside, helping to improve patient health outcomes.

Biodiversity Value at Risk

The tool assesses financial risks of biodiversity loss and provides forward-looking guidance to companies.

Computational prediction of long COVID in the Canton of Zurich

Based on serum immunoglobulin measurements, a prediction score was developed to calculate the individual risk of developing long COVID. The score is implemented by means of an interactive web application. By identifying patients at risk, preventive and therapeutic measures can be developed.

The Ethics-Assessment-Tool for the Humanitarian Use of Drones (E-HUD)

Ethical challenges arise from the use of drones in the humanitarian field. The project is developing a digital solution to assess them. The completed research project is now being technologically implemented.


The tool promotes productivity and well-being in hybrid workplaces through an ambient display. The prototype, which reduces interruptions at work by visualising the user’s current focus in a physical LED light, is being developed into a product-ready version.

LEAD – LEarning from the pAst: Digitized pandemic history in Switzerland

Historical data of past pandemics will be digitized and made publicly accessible. Through interactive visualisation, data history is told and made available to the public and researchers.  

Modularised platform for medical image data

The software allows the quick and easy integration of approaches from research, thus accelerating the clinical evaluation of innovative approaches and reducing the time until a promising new solution can be used in clinical routine.

Research Video in Modcast format

The tool enables moving images, texts and other elements to be transferred into an intuitively navigable and long-term stable publication form. Archiving and low-threshold accessibility make the annotated videos useful for practice-based research, which is increasingly turning to videos as a form of data.

Playfully training writing motor skills

Serious Educational Games offer a promising approach to motivate children to regularly train motor writing skills. The prototype will be further developed and a pilot study conducted in a school context.