Smart D8 Opens New Call for Pilot Projects following Three Years of Success

  • New call for pilot projects in three areas: Community Health, Health Literacy and Environment
  • Up to six pilot projects will be selected from call, following success of 12 projects over three years
  • Smart D8 is led by The Digital Hub, St James’s Hospital, Dublin City Council and Smart Dublin

Smart D8, an urban health initiative using innovation to improve and sustain community health and wellbeing in Dublin 8, has opened a new call for pilot projects following three years of successful pilot projects.

Smart D8 is set to expand the number of pilot projects selected from this year’s call, with up to six successful pilots to receive support of up to €12,500 in resourcing.

Smart D8 is now seeking applications for pilot projects focused on Community Health, Health Literacy and the Environment to continue developing Dublin 8 as a demonstrator centred on enhancing the health and wellbeing of the 45,000 citizens in the community.

Over the last three years, Smart D8 has engaged with several public organisations and private companies. Through a series of pilot projects as well as ongoing partner collaboration, Dublin 8 has gradually transformed into a demonstrator focused on the health and wellbeing of citizens.

The 2024 pilot call is open to all Enterprise, Academic Institutions, and Public and Private sector organisations who offer innovative and scalable solutions that address unmet needs of the community and can be enabled by collaboration with Smart D8 partners.

Jack Lehane, Smart D8 Ecosystem Manager, said:

Following the success of our previous pilot projects, which have positively impacted over 6,000 citizens in Dublin 8 by enhancing awareness across various health issues including heart health and mental wellbeing, we are now inviting applicants in the areas of Community Health, Health Literacy and Environmental.  Smart D8 provides an excellent opportunity for businesses and researchers to meaningfully contribute to improving the health and wellbeing of citizens in Dublin 8 and beyond, and we strongly encourage any organisations who have developed innovative products or services in these three areas to apply.”

Giulia Camera, Smart D8 Enterprise and Learning Coordinator, added:

The community is central to the development and innovation at Smart D8. The latest call for pilot projects provides an excellent opportunity for developments to flourish in three critical areas of local health innovation, which will not only support the health and wellbeing of the local community but will also enable improved education on key areas of everyday wellness. By providing access to new projects and resources on health, we can progress the wellbeing of the Dublin 8 community, and beyond, one step further.”

The success of Smart D8 is evident through various pilot projects over recent years. These initiatives include Menopause and the City which aimed at educating women and their surrounding family and friends about menopause so they can be empowered to manage their symptoms, Heart of Our City which aimed at improving awareness and management of cardiovascular disease in the community, and Civic Dollars which enabled people to earn a digital currency through spending time in local parks and nature.

Smart D8 is led by The Digital Hub, Smart Dublin, Dublin City Council and St. James’s Hospital. They are joined by Tyndall National Institute, St Patrick’s Mental Health Services, Trinity Research & Innovation, Trinity Translational Medicine Institute, National College of Art & Design, Guinness Enterprise Centre, Health Innovation Hub Ireland and the HSE in this unique collaborative initiative.

Applications will close on Friday, March 29th at 11pm. For more information on Smart D8 and to find out how to apply for the latest round of pilot projects, please visit

View the criteria here: and apply here: by Friday, 29th March 2024 at 23:00

Smart D8 Call for Pilots 2024 : Call Now Open

Following three years of success in engaging Enterprise, Academia and a range of relevant stakeholders, the Smart D8 initiative has delivered 12 impactful and scalable pilots. In 2024 this engagement will continue with a fourth open call for pilots.

Continuing to focus on the measured health and wellbeing needs of the 45,000 strong diverse Dublin 8 population, this call will focus on three themes namely:

  • Community Health,
  • Health Literacy, and
  • Environment

Smart D8 seeks to support the development of impactful and sustainable pilots with the potential to scale that involve enterprise, academic and other relevant public and private stakeholders. The pilot proposals should be ready to deploy with end-users and should be in a position to measure impacts within a six-month timeframe. Up to six pilots will be chosen for individual project resourcing of up to €12,500.

View the press release here: To apply, please submit your proposals here: by Friday, 29th March 2024 at 23:00

Smart D8 Pilot Call Themes

Some examples of the types of pilots which would be relevant to the Dublin 8 population are given here for illustrative purposes. Smart D8 takes a very broad perspective on population health and wellbeing. Balancing preventative approaches with the support for patients in the community and including innovation in the delivery of healthcare, the pilot call is broad in the application areas.

Community Health

  • Innovative community development projects that foster collaboration and engagement and connect to Smart D8.
  • Initiatives to reduce social isolation and enhance mental health support networks and cohesion at the community level.
  • Sustainable practices for creating inclusive and accessible community spaces that promote physical and mental wellbeing.
  • Programs that empower local residents to take an active role in shaping health-conscious communities.
  • Projects aimed at improving cultural diversity and inclusion within the community for wellbeing.
  • Creative approaches to foster intergenerational connections within neighbourhoods.

Health Literacy

  • Curriculum development incorporating mental and physical health education at various educational levels (e.g. youth, older people, disaffected youth, carers, etc.)
  • Initiatives to promote healthy lifestyle choices and preventive health measures among both citizens and non-nationals
  • Programs fostering awareness of inclusive public health issues, such as infectious and/or chronic disease as they relate to population health.
  • Education on nutrition and the importance of a balanced diet for overall wellbeing.
  • Innovative approaches to teach citizens about the social determinants of health, health equity and the role of technology.
  • Inclusion of practical skills, such as first aid and CPR training, in the educational curriculum.


  • Community-based partnerships for sustainable agriculture and local food production to improve nutrition.
  • Conservation efforts to protect biodiversity, recognizing its impact on ecological balance and human health strategy and resilience.
  • Initiatives related to the monitoring and mitigating of environmental factors affecting public health (e.g. greening, air quality, etc.)
  • Initiatives that prioritise healthy working/living environments (e.g. sustainable urban planning and design for wellbeing, etc.)
  • Environmental mapping processes that can improve policies and practices for public health outcomes (e.g. Digital Twins, stress reduction, sports/leisure facilities, work/life balance, etc.)
  • Initiatives promoting eco-friendly options to reduce pollution and enhance respiratory health (e.g. transportation, active travel, etc.)

Who Should Apply?

The pilot call is open to all Enterprise, Academic Institutions, Public and Private sector organisations, who:

  • Offer innovative and scalable solutions (products, services, content or devices).
  • Provides new practices/solutions/perspectives that address an unmet need in the community.
  • Have a solution that is ready for end-user deployment within six months.
  • Can be enabled by a co creation and collaboration with the Smart D8 partners and beyond.

Why Apply?

  • Opportunity to pilot and demonstrate the impact and scalability of your offering in a real-world community setting.
  • Access to a unique collaborative ecosystem with established clinical, academic, public and private sector engagement.
  • Funding support available for selected pilots.
  • Programme management support.
  • Marketing and promotion support.
  • Access to free workspace in Dublin 8 during the pilot period.

Why Apply?

  • Applicants must submit a completed application form through the Smart D8 website here. Applicants can apply for more than one call. If your institution cannot access Google Forms via a Google account, you can access the Pilot Application Template, with submission instructions, here.
  • Call opens: Tuesday, 27th February 2024
  • Call closes: on Friday, 29th March 2024 at 23:00
  • Evaluation of proposals: Your submission will be reviewed by an expert panel drawn from the Smart D8 partners. A shortlist of applicants will be selected and will be asked to make a presentation to the evaluation panel. An update on the call outcome will be provided to all applicants at the end of the review process, anticipated by Tuesday 30th April 2024.
  • Projects to start: May 2024
  • Projects to present results/interim results: October 2024

Eligibility, Evaluation & Selection Criteria

Pilot applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Impact
    A level of innovation in terms of technology/service will be required that address an unmet or underserved need. Innovation in the incremental or disruptive approach taken to advance the pilot with end-users will also be evaluated.
  • Scalability
    An evaluation will be made as to how scalable is your proposed solution after the pilot? Applications will be studied on the basis of the ambitions for scale and how they will be achieved, as well as integration with existing services.
  • Team & Resources
    The Smart D8 evaluation panel will consider what resources and people are being supplied to the pilot and what the ask is in terms of people and resources from Smart D8, including competence of team members for internal project delivery. Explicit communication of resource contribution (including budget) is also required, such as what resources are provided versus those requested of Smart D8.
  • User-Centric
    The evaluation team will look for proposals that are end-user focused. The measures of response to needs of community or service users for health and wellbeing impacts of the population of D8 will be scored.
  • Impact
    Smart D8 want to back projects which can produce and measure clear impacts on the health and wellbeing of citizens.
  • Alignment with the objectives of the Smart D8 project
    Smart D8 takes a very broad perspective on population health and wellbeing. Balancing preventative approaches with the support for patients in the community and in innovation in the delivery of healthcare, the pilot will be evaluated against these objectives as they relate to the Smart D8 programme and involvement of Smart D8 partner/s.

About Smart D8

Smart D8 is a collaborative initiative to investigate how new and innovative approaches can be used to improve citizens’ health and well-being in Dublin 8.

The Smart D8 District brings together local authorities, academia, healthcare, local community and industry in a partnership model to address real-world issues.

The Smart D8 consortium is led by The Digital Hub, St James’s Hospital, Dublin City Council and Smart Dublin, together with the Guinness Enterprise Centre, HSE Digital Transformation, Tyndall National Institute, St Patrick’s Mental Health Services, Trinity College Dublin Research & Innovation, Trinity Translational Medicine Institute, National College of Art & Design, and Health Innovation Hub Ireland.

Smart D8 has engaged with the local Dublin 8 community to identify the major issues faced in terms of health and well-being and will develop an ecosystem of innovation and collaboration where solutions can be developed to address these issues.

Love Your Heart Event

Love Your Heart Event at St Andrew’s Community Centre

On Wednesday, February 14th, 2024, Smart D8 supported the Love Your Heart event at St Andrew’s Community Centre from 10 am until 2 pm.

This event was also supported by Dublin City Council, Dublin South City Partnership, Rialto Development Association, Rialto Primary Care Centre, and the Dublin 8 Community Health Project based in F2 Centre.

Love Your Heart – Love Your Health – Love Yourself

Since its inception in 2017, Love Your Heart has blossomed into a free annual event at St. Andrew’s Community Centre, aiming to inspire individuals to prioritize their health, all while harnessing the spirit of Valentine’s Day.

At the core of Love Your Heart is the mission to foster community health using holistic care. Every year the event offers attendees a day filled with opportunities for connection and self-care, bringing people together in a community setting to promote healthy living choices.

Variety of Health-Focused Activities To Celebrate Health

Throughout the day, a diverse range of activities aimed at promoting community health and wellbeing were offered:

  • Blood Pressure Checks:  the Irish Heart Foundation’s mobile unit allowed attendees to monitor their blood pressure, promoting awareness and proactive management of cardiovascular health.
  • Informational Stands: cardiovascular health and quitting smoking (HSE’s stand), innovative solutions for health and wellbeing challenges (Smart D8’s stand), community health initiatives in Dublin 8 (Fatima Groups United’s stand and St Andrew’s stand).
  • Healthy Smoothie Demonstrations: attendees learned how to create nutritious and delicious smoothies, empowering individuals to make healthier dietary choices.
  • Cardiac Arrest Response Demonstrations: attendees gained essential life-saving skills with demonstrations on how to respond to cardiac arrest situations and effectively use a defibrillator.
  • Holistic Therapies: attendees experienced relaxation and rejuvenation with a variety of complementary holistic therapies, including Indian Head Massage, Reiki, Reflexology, Back Massage, Acupuncture, and more.
  • Nail Painting and Tarot Readings: attendees explored spiritual connections through tarot readings and pampered themselves through nail painting sessions.
  • Café Setting with Light Refreshments: attendees enjoyed light refreshments in a cozy café atmosphere, promoting social interaction and companionship on a day that may feel isolating to some.

Growing Community Engagement

By offering these diverse activities, the event aimed to create an inclusive and supportive environment where individuals could prioritize their health and connect with their community.

Love Your Heart has seen steady growth in attendance year after year, with over 70 attendees recorded this year.

Beyond being a one-time event, Love Your Heart serves as a catalyst for ongoing community connection and support. Through word-of-mouth communication and networking opportunities, the event fosters a culture of mutual care and wellbeing.

In essence, Love Your Heart offers the community a chance to come together, celebrate wellness, and reaffirm the bonds of camaraderie and self-love using Valentine’s Day as an inspiration to reconnect with oneself and others.

Physical Health & Wellbeing Events Supported By Smart D8

Smart D8 Continues To Empower Community Health & Wellbeing in Dublin 8

As we step into the second month of the year, Smart D8 is thrilled to maintain its commitment to supporting organizations in Dublin 8 that strive to enhance the health and wellbeing of the community. Following the successful launch of the new year with initiatives centred around healthy food and eating classes, which will continue until March, our focus in February shifts towards promoting physical health and wellbeing.

February Focus: Promoting Physical Health & Wellbeing

In the pursuit of a holistic approach to community health and wellbeing, Smart D8 recognizes the pivotal role that physical health and wellbeing play in fostering a thriving and resilient society.

Physical health and wellbeing are essential for maintaining a healthy body and a healthy mind, and for reducing the prevalence of lifestyle-related health issues.

Therefore, we are excited to announce our support for the following organizations:

1) St Andrew’s Community Centre – ‘Love Your Heart’ Initiative

Smart D8 is honoured to support such an inspiring initiative such ‘Love Your Heart’. Since its inception in 2017, it has been a way to encourage people to think of their health by bringing people together in a community setting to promote healthy living choices and looking after oneself.

This will be achieved by offering on the day a range of complementary holistic therapies, several informational stands covering a variety of health-related topics, demonstrations on how to make healthy juice, and free blood pressure checks to prevent heart-related issues.

This Initiative is also supported by Dublin City Council, Dublin South City Partnership, Rialto Development Association, Rialto Primary Care Centre, and the Dublin 8 Community Health Project based in F2 Centre.

Date: 14/02/2024

Time: 10 am – 2 pm

Location: St Andrew’s Community Centre

2) Fatima Groups United – ‘Change For Life’ Programme

Smart D8 is happy to keep supporting Fatima Groups United as they continue their ‘Change For Life’ Programme, empowering individuals to embrace a healthier outlook on life through various activities. We are excited to be part of this journey by supporting the delivery of dance classes.

Dance is not just a form of exercise, it is a joyful and expressive way to stay active and boost overall wellbeing while promoting group cohesion.

This Programme is also supported by Dublin City Sport And Wellbeing Partnership, The Family Resource Centre, CDETB, Dolphin House, Sport Ireland and HSE.









Time: 10 am

Location: F2 Centre Fatima

The Power Of Community Engagement

Smart D8 firmly believes in the transformative power of community engagement to drive positive change. By actively supporting programs that promote health and wellbeing, Smart D8 aspires to create a ripple effect that extends beyond individuals, benefiting the entire community.

Our commitment to supporting organizations dedicated to helping each other and promoting health and wellbeing remains steadfast. One initiative a time, we hope to foster positive outcomes for community health and wellbeing.

If you would like our assistance in organizing and delivering a health and wellbeing event, please do not hesitate to contact us at


Smart D8 Workshop at Inchicore College

Smart D8 Workshop at Inchicore College of Further Education’s Health and Wellbeing Week



On Thursday, January 18, 2024, Smart D8 conducted an engaging and dynamic workshop from 11 am to 12 pm with students at Inchicore College of Further Education as part of its Health and Wellbeing Week. This annual event, dedicated to promoting health and wellbeing, featured a diverse schedule of activities throughout the college. Topics covered during the week included Blue Monday, stress management, self-care, safe sex, fitness, kindness, active consent, laughter yoga, meditation, and more.

Smart D8 Workshop 

The Smart D8 workshop aimed to facilitate interactive discussions about the health and wellbeing challenges faced by students in the D8 community. The session sought to understand their needs and explore potential solutions through the Smart D8 initiative. The format encouraged active participation and collaboration, starting with a brief presentation on Smart D8 followed by an open discussion using the Jamboard.

Fifteen students from Psychology and Social Studies Courses attended the workshop and were divided into four groups. Each group addressed four key questions:

  1. What are your health and wellbeing challenges as students in the D8 community?
  2. What are your health and wellbeing needs as students in the D8 community?
  3. How do you think Smart D8 could help address these challenges and needs?
  4. What questions would you ask in a survey to measure the impact of the Smart D8 health and wellbeing initiatives on people’s health and wellbeing?

Key Discussions

Health and Wellbeing Challenges

Students pinpointed a range of challenges during the workshop, including the absence of community centers or mental health services, concerns about antisocial behavior in the area, inadequate ventilation in classrooms, restricted facilities for food preparation, the lack of healthy food options or affordable meals, and difficulties accessing medical centers with lengthy waiting lists. Additionally, they highlighted insufficient language support for non-native English speakers and noted the community’s resistance to change, expressing a desire to preserve the historical significance and origins of the area.

Health and Wellbeing Needs

The identified needs included more affordable accommodations, additional time in communal areas, increased breaks between classes, clearer instructions and deadlines from teachers, a cleaner canteen environment, more classrooms, enhanced group activities, access to a gym, greater attention to physical exercise and nutrition, and expanded options for healthy lunch choices.

Smart D8’s Role 

Students expressed the belief that Smart D8 could advocate for their needs, assist in overcoming challenges, and contribute by gathering data to inform decision-making.


The students engaged in lively discussions, providing valuable insights and feedback. The workshop concluded with a fruitful discussion of ideas written on the Jamboard, showcasing the students’ enthusiasm and proactive approach. Smart D8 looks forward to continued collaboration with Inchicore College in the future.

Healthy Food & Eating Events Supported By Smart D8

Empowering Community Health & Wellbeing in 2024: A New Beginning

As we bid farewell to the old and usher in the new, Smart D8 extends warm wishes for a year filled with joy, growth, and above all, good health to our incredible community. As previously hinted towards the end of last year, Smart D8 is now embarking  on an exciting journey to empower community health and wellbeing throughout 2024.

A Comprehensive Initiative

Our commitment to fostering a healthier and happier community is taking shape through comprehensive health and wellbeing initiatives, forged in collaboration with various esteemed organizations across Dublin 8. The time has come for these initiatives to unfold, and we are delighted to share the details of our inaugural focus.

January Focus: Promoting Healthy Food & Eating

Smart D8 is thrilled to commence this journey with a dedicated focus on promoting healthy food and eating habits. We firmly believe that a foundation of good nutrition lays the groundwork for overall wellbeing. Therefore, from January until March, we are excited to announce our support for two outstanding organizations:

1) Fatima Groups United – ‘Change For Life’ Programme

We will be actively supporting Fatima Groups United in the delivery of nutrition classes as part of their ‘Change For Life’ Programme. These classes aim to empower individuals with the knowledge and skills needed to make informed, health-conscious choices regarding their diet and nutrition.

This Programme is also supported by Dublin City Sport And Wellbeing Partnership, The Family Resource Centre, CDETB, Dolphin House, Sport Irland and HSE.










Time: 5:30 pm

Location: F2 Centre Fatima

2) Robert Emmet CDP/SICCDA – Cooking On A Budget Classes

We will be actively supporting Robert Emmet CDP/SICCDA in the delivery of ‘Cooking On A Budget’ classes. These classes aim to teach individuals practical skills to create healthy food and affordable meals.










Time: 10 am – 12 pm

Location: SICCDA (Earl Street)

Stay Connected, Stay Informed

Smart D8 is committed to keeping our community informed and engaged. Throughout the year, we will provide regular updates on our website, ensuring you stay in the loop about upcoming initiatives and events designed to enhance the health and wellbeing of our cherished Dublin 8 residents.

If you would like our assistance in organizing and delivering a health and wellbeing event, please do not hesitate to contact us at

Smart D8 For A Healthy District

Empowering Community Health & Wellbeing

Smart D8 is excited to announce comprehensive health and wellbeing initiatives next year in collaboration with various organizations across Dublin 8.

We aim to foster a healthier and happier community by offering classes and workshops open to workers and residents in Dublin 8.

These initiatives will take place from January until May 2024 in various areas, including The Liberties, Inchicore, Rialto and Dolphin’s Barn. They will be free of charge and open to workers and residents in Dublin 8.

These events are designed to cater to diverse age groups and cover a range of themes, such as healthy food and eating, physical activity, successful and positive ageing and mental health.

Smart D8 will support and collaborate with several organizations already making a significant contribution to the D8 community.

First Quarter of 2024: Healthy Food And Eating, and Physical Activity

In the first quarter of the upcoming year, we will delve into the themes of healthy food and eating, as well as physical activity.

We will support Dublin City Sport & Wellbeing Partnership and F2 Centre in the delivery of the Change For Life Program and Robert Emmet Community Development Project & South Inner City Community Development Association in the delivery of cooking classes.

Second Quarter of 2024: Successful and Positive Ageing, and Mental Health

In the second quarter, our focus will shift towards successful and positive ageing, as well as mental health.

We will support The Digital Hub, Robert Emmet Community Development Project & South Inner City Community Development Association, and Mercer’s Institute For Successful Ageing in the delivery of digital skills classes, knitting and art workshops aimed at supporting the health and wellbeing of older member of our community.

We will support Magic Minds, Turn2me, Tusla – Child And Family Agency, St Patrick’s Mental Health Services, Sound Healing Academy, St Michael’s Family Resource Centre, Common Ground, and Inchicore Domestic Violence Centre in the delivery of mental health related workshops (e.g., mindfulness and meditation, how to manage anxiety, women empowerment etc…).

Smart D8: Your Partner In Community Health & Wellbeing

Smart D8 is committed to supporting communities and organisations. If you would like our assistance in organizing and delivering a health and wellbeing event, please do not hesitate to contact us at

Stay tuned for updates: more info about the dates and locations of the events in January!

Smart D8: Tech Innovations Tackling Health and Social Challenges in Dublin

The logic that one way to ease pressure on healthcare services is to prevent more people getting ill underpins a piloting of new health and wellness projects in Dublin city.

The State’s “health” policy could be more accurately described as a “sickness” policy, says Jack Lehane, ecosystem manager with Smart D8, as much of the €20 billion-plus budget is spent on treating illness.“There is an idea that you can engage populations at scale and limit the number of people who end up getting sick in the first place. Maybe we could use our resources a little more ‘smartly’. Maybe we don’t need bigger hospitals; we just need fewer people getting sick.”Jack Lehane.

D8is one of the Smart Dublin districts that are looking to fast-track technological innovations to solve local social challenges, with an eye on potential for scaling up citywide, or even nationally and internationally.Working on a catchment area of 43,000people that encompasses neighbourhoods such as the Liberties, Kilmainham and Rialto, as well as St James’s Hospital and St Patrick’s Mental Health Services, Smart D8 is focusing on health initiatives.

A 2020 survey of 250 local residents found 31 per cent had long-standing health problems; 27 per cent had accessed mental health service supports in the previous two years; and 21 per cent had unmet health needs due to waiting lists. Smart D8 is a 12-partner consortium led by, among others, Dublin City Council and the Digital Hub, and incorporates academia, public sector, private enterprise and civil society.