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24 November 2011 | PR 11/148

Loughborough University supports national photography competition


An example of the type of photograph you can enter in the competition.  Image courtesy of Manchester City Council.

Loughborough University is supporting a national photography competition aimed at challenging preconceptions about how older people interact with technology now and in the future.

Entitled 'Left to Our Own Devices', the contest is run jointly by Age UK, a national charity, and KT‑EQUAL, a research consortium dedicated to improving the lives of older and disabled people, of which Loughborough University is a member.

Entries will be judged not only on their photographic merit but also on how they address issues related to the central theme of older people's interactions with technology -- perhaps by challenging stereotypes, defying expectations or delivering a powerful message.

The most successful images will be selected from across four categories:

All the selected images will be included in a touring exhibition that will visit Parliament at Westminster and the Assemblies at Cardiff and Stormont, finishing at the Scottish Parliament next spring.

One image in each category will also receive a cash prize of £250.

The judging panel will consist of:

Loughborough’s Professor Leela Damodaran, who is based in the Department of Information Science and a member of the KT-EQUAL consortium, said: “It will be great to see the diversity of older people’s ICT use and to see images which capture both the exciting opportunities that ICT offers but also perhaps some of the challenges, frustrations – and even ingenious coping strategies!” 

Phil Rossall of Age UK added: “Technology for older people can take many forms.  It’s not just computers and smartphones, it’s anything which can make later life more comfortable, more rewarding or less arduous.

“At Age UK, we’re interested in new technology less for its technical merits than for its tangible benefits for quality of life – something we hope this competition will help to promote.”

The contest is free to enter at http://lefttoourowndevices.org.uk, where users can also browse other entries and take part in online discussions on the thoughts they provoke.

The closing date for entries is 31 January 2012.


For all media enquiries contact:

Judy Wing
Senior PR Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 228697
E: J.L.Wing@lboro.ac.uk 

For further information contact:

Toby Wardman
Communications Officer
T: 07739 071609
E: toby@40k.org.uk 

Notes for editors:

About the competition:

Entries are welcome from both amateur and professional photographers.  Judging criteria and other rules of entry are listed at http://lefttoourowndevices.org.uk.  Entrants retain copyright over the images they submit, subject to acceptance of standard terms and conditions for entry.


KT-EQUAL is a consortium of UK researchers dedicated to extending quality life for older and disabled people. We work to ensure that years of investment in high-quality research translate into real benefits that have an impact on people's lives. www.equal.ac.uk

About Age UK:

Age UK has a vision of a world in which older people flourish. We aim to improve later life for everyone through our information and advice, campaigns, products, training and research. www.ageuk.org.uk

About Loughborough University:

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year 2008-09 title, and is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in national newspaper league tables. In the 2011 National Student Survey, Loughborough was voted one of the top universities in the UK, and has topped the Times Higher Education league for the UK’s Best Student Experience every year since the poll's inception in 2006. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

It is a member of the 1994 Group of 19 leading research-intensive universities. The Group was established in 1994 to promote excellence in university research and teaching. Each member undertakes diverse and high-quality research, while ensuring excellent levels of teaching and student experience.

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