AO Development Incubator


AO Development Incubator  

The AO Development Incubator (AODI) serves to foster valuable ideas that support the AO Foundation’s mission of promoting excellence in patient care and outcomes in trauma and musculoskeletal disorders by supporting inventors with the finances and know-how they need to build and execute project plans towards a proof of concept (PoC).

AODI projects can originate from anyone within or from outside the AO Foundation. 

AO's innovation landscape

The AO Foundation, capitalizing on its 60-year history of innovation, recently created a variety of innovation initiatives. These complement the current AO initiatives, and open up pathways to new ideas:  

AOTK System: the unique point of reference for all technological advancements developed with the AO's industrial partners.

AO Strategy Fund​: provides support for strategically important new initiatives.

AO Invest​: invests in startups advancing patient care in orthopedic and trauma surgery.

AODI: supports inventors in securing IP and reaching PoC valorization.​


Call for Proposals

Call for Applications

The fourth Call for Proposals is now closed.

The submitted proposals are currently being evaluated by the AODI board​.​

​We thank all applicants who will be notified about the outcome of their project proposal by the end of December 2018.

​​For any other questions, please email the AODI team at



How AODI supports inventors​

Process AODI
Financial support

Funding is granted by an indepen​dent board​, which approves proposals and consults widely with experts in the relevant fields. 

Intellectual support
Once approved for funding, the AODI partners with i​nventors to:

• ​Securing Intellectual Property (IP)
• Developing a proof of concept (PoC)
• Planning the PoC valorization​


AODI projects are heterogenous in terms of their technology and investment readiness levels. Some have just a prototype, some already have lab results, some have patents and some are just ideas, but all of them have in common the prospect to bring innovative patient care solutions to the market. 

 Innovative hand external fixator: Versatile and simple system for external fixation of fractures of fingers. Read more...

 Fracture monitor: Implantable telemetric sensor system for monitoring of bone healing. Coming soon...

 Biphasic plate: Improving fracture stabilization by providing a predictable mechanical environment at the fracture. ​Coming soon...

How to apply​

The AODI has at least one call a year for new proposals, each targeting different areas of expertise. PoC for a selected project should be achieved within a 1-5 year time frame.

The area of focus for this call is improvement in patient care as it applies to orthopaedic trauma, spinal conditions, craniomaxillofacial surgery and veterinary surgery. Proposals on the following topics will be considered Out of Scope:

 Surgical instruments
 Pure research (unless it translates into product development)

After closing the call, the AODI board​ will review all received proposals, and each applicant will receive a feedback by the end of December 2018.​

Learn more in the FAQ's​​