About IZRIIS Institute

research, education, public health, integrated care, intergenerational & gerontology issues

IZRIIS Institute is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation founded in Slovenia, professionally oriented on the rights of the civil society, families ( since 2004) and older adults in the information society (health data, GDPR, e-health access – since 2013), family rights, health issues rights, youth and children rights related to addiction and inclusiveness, legislation for health rights of youth and children. Since 2019 also information society policy, digital democracy activities, standards and accreditation of e-health services.

We are involved in EU and national level projects – AAL JP, ICT PSP, Horizon, Erasmus+ Strategic partnerships – as partners, subcontractors, expert advisors in EU consortia.

Partner and member of the National network of NGOs for an inclusive information society, CNVOS – the national NGO advocacy centre and of ISfTeh International Society – in official relations to WHO and cooperation with WHO Unit for Digital Health Capacity Building and Collaboration.

The institute focuses on three main areas: 

(1) Intergenerational relations, counselling and family centre; 

(2) Gerontology with connection to ICT services and living environment solutions for independent living – also smart environment solutions, smart cities and evaluation and certification of services (smart living lab and evaluation centres); 

(3) Health promotion and primary prevention in the field of addictions. 

The personnel at IZRIIS pursue interdisciplinary work in the fields of sociology, psychology, medical sciences, supported by research, education and business. IZRIIS is a partner of several national and international programs from 2003 to present, such as: 

(1) AAL JP NITICS (Networked InfrasTructure for Innovative home Care Solutions – 2015/18) AAL IONIS (Indoor and outdoor NITICSplus solution for dementia challenges – 2016/20); AAL INCARE (Packages integrating different solutions based on ICT to support active, healthy and independent living of older adults – 2017 / 2021) partner; Commissioned research about the use of ICT among elderly, chronically ill and persons with dementia in Slovenia and Europe, comparative study; case-studies.

(2) OASIS – Intergenerational program for family issues and quality ageing, Intergenerational centres, Family centres – 5000 end-users, self-support groups, volunteers, primary and secondary schools, teachers and experts; supported by Ministry of Labour, family, equal opportunities; Municipalities in Slovenia 

(3) “Choose a healthy life!” – Addiction prevention and health promotion; supported by Ministry of Health; Municipalities in Slovenia. Co-working with medical institutions, educational institutions, secondary schools to promote healthy life among youth. Developing educational modules for nursing in connection with ICT services.

Other activities: raising awareness and de-stigmatization of dementia and providing support informations and education to care-givers and family members; more than 10.000 participants, are involved in our activities (health, family center, education); publishing monthly newsletter magazine and radio shows – reach/online 120.000 – in cooperation with Slovenian Municipalities through their channels of information deployment. 

International involvement in dementia issues, geriatric and ICT solutions; conferences and publications (recent/2019, IsfTeh and Portugal Summit – Lisbon; Dementia care – Toronto, Canada; Alzheimer EU – Haag)

IZRIIS and IZRIIS International Alliance are associated to: 

  • IsfTeh International society for Telemedicine and eHealth – in official relations to WHO; Telehealth Global Quality Group 
  • As Slovenia members: Slovenian Medical Society – Slovenian Preventive Medicine Society / Chamber of Sanitary Engineers of Slovenia.
  • The Information Society network of Slovenia – https://www.informacijska-druzba.org/english/
  • The European Public Health Conference Foundation and The European Public Health Association, https://eupha.org/ and Institute of Public and Environmental Health; NGO SZTOK and https://epha.org/  http://ensp.network/   https://www.fctc.org/ https://smokefreepartnership.eu/  The Smoke Free Partnership ; https://www.uicc.org/ Union for international cancer control; http://www.nevladni.info/  ; http://nvozdravje.si/ Slovenian Association for public health.
  • Partner with: eDementia; National institute for Public health Slovenia / Ministry of Health of Slovenia; NoExcuse; Eclexys Switzerland; CITST Romania; Technical University of Warsaw; Medical University of Warsaw; Technical University of Bucarest; Softic and Bay Zoltan Institute – Hungary; Medical University of LjubljanaSTAFF:

(1) Neja Samar Brenčič (F), MSc., MA – director of the Institute, is a psychologist (MA in organisation and work psychology – topic: Communication in companies) and researcher of ICT and gerontology – Phd program at the University of Ljubljana. She holds a Slovenian national extrajudicial mediation degree and specialization in supervision of companies and projects at the Slovenian Social Chamber and the Faculty of Social Work, University of Ljubljana. She is an author of articles and conference presentation at the multinational conference cooperation with Institute Jožef Štefan leading Slovenian scientific research institute, covering a broad spectrum of basic and applied research, production and control technologies, communication and computer technologies, knowledge technologies. The last 20 years she has dedicated to the development of the intergenerational programs, quality communication within families and social problems. 

(2) Katja Jarc, MA, masters in pedagogic, head specialist of the Institute programs, a postgraduate researcher at University of Ljubljana and also holds a specialization in andragogy from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. She is a researcher and quality assurance supervisor at the institute. She also leads groups for self-support and operates as the counsellor and therapist for all age groups. She takes an active part in projects supporting elderly to live independently in their homes. 

(3) Špela Godnič, MA (Masters in social work – University of social work Ljubljana). Her main credentials and experiences are in support work with elderly, physically and mentally impaired and disabled persons, people with dementia, Alzheimer disease, autism and Asperger’s syndrome. She is an expert on ethical standards regarding elderly and physically/mentally challenged persons; and in academic field research and research data analysis. 

(4) Miha Godnič,

(5) Tina Mihelič, MA in pedagogic and andragogic, University of Ljubljana is a head project coordinator and quality of program content supervisor.

(6) Katja Kmetec, MA, University of Ljubljana, end-users and volunteers’ coordinator, end-users and stakeholders network supervisor.

(7) Dr. Drago Rudel, el.eng., phd., expert advisor in telehealth and telecare solutions. Adviser to IZRIIS. 

(8) Nikica Grkman, medical nurse and a professor at medical school Ljubljana, expert co-worker for elderly care and nursing program coordinator (end-users, school, experts, students).

(9) Maja Kern, medical nurse and physiotherapist, Clinical praxis – University Clinical Centre Ljubljana, extensive experience in caring for elderly patients and elderly persons with dementia challenges; professional adviser to IZRIIS for the end-user experience.

(10) Petra Boh, MA, Masters in social work – University of social work Ljubljana, project developer for Alzheimer and Dementia challenges (PR activities, website, social media, raising awareness activities).

(11) Mohor Pleničar, University of administration, events support.

(12) Helena Crček, field work and workshops organiser; program content supervisor.

(13) Meta Cencelj, MBA, project business coordinator.

(14) Špela Kariž, office administrator and accountant, projects and programs budget supervisor.

(15) Luka Godnič, IZRIIS head accountant, finance and business Auditor.