SightCity Forum – A mosaic of inclusion and rehabilitation

The SightCity Forum - a mosaic of inclusion and rehabilitation

The SightCity Forum has been an institution for many years, bringing together people with visual impairments and blindness, experts from the fields of medicine, research and rehabilitation as well as interested parties from all over the world. It offers a platform for the exchange of the latest scientific and medical developments as well as for the professional and social rehabilitation of people with visual impairments and blindness. The history of the SightCity Forum is a chronicle of the joint commitment of many respected experts and speakers who have enriched and facilitated the lives of many people.

History of SightCity

SightCity Frankfurt, founded in 2003, has an impressive history that was born out of a simple idea: to create a trade fair that is fully dedicated to the needs of people with visual impairments. The fair has quickly become one of the most important events for aids for the blind and visually impaired and attracts visitors from all over the world.

The SightCity Forum is a central component of this trade fair and has been taking place parallel to the event days since 2006. Organized by the Aachen Centre for Technology Transfer in Ophthalmology (ACTO e. V.) in cooperation with the Berufsförderungs- (BFW) and Berufsbildungswerke (BBW) as well as the Deutscher Blinden und Sehbehinderten Verband (DBSV) and PRO RETINA Deutschland, it serves as an ongoing information and discussion platform. Here, experts and those affected share their knowledge and experience in order to jointly overcome the challenges faced by people with sight loss and blindness and to promote professional and social rehabilitation.

SightCity Forum: The knowledge platform

The SightCity Forum has established itself as a recognized knowledge platform that not only informs visitors about the latest developments and research findings, but also acts as a discussion forum for affected persons and experts from various fields. The combination of practical exchange, scientific research and vocational and social rehabilitation makes the forum so unique.

In addition to the physical meetings, which attract numerous visitors every year, the forum has expanded its reach since 2021 thanks to digitalization through Zoom and now enables a global community to participate in the presentations and discussions. This underlines the SightCity Forum’s commitment to inclusion and accessibility and makes it a central point in the calendar for all those who support the interests of people with visual impairments or are affected by them.

The thematic focus of the forum is on patient symposia dealing with specific clinical pictures such as optical blindness and visual impairment, glaucoma or genetic retinal diseases. These offer those affected valuable insights into current research findings and therapeutic approaches. It is this direct engagement with the specialist topics and the opportunity for personal discussions following the presentations that make the SightCity Forum a unique educational and communication platform.

Innovation and progress

Vocational and social rehabilitation and the latest research findings are the heart and driving force behind the SightCity Forum. Every year, experts and speakers present their latest findings aimed at making the lives of people with visual impairments and blindness easier and increasing their independence. The significance of such developments extends far beyond the everyday lives of the people affected; they are also the basis for social participation towards a more inclusive world.

The presentations and discussions that will take place during the forum will offer insights into the latest scientific findings and medical treatments for low vision. Such knowledge platforms promote interdisciplinary exchange, which is of enormous importance both for those affected and for the professional world.

In addition, a sound transmission system ensures that there are no barriers for people with impaired hearing during all presentations.

Interdisciplinary specialist congress with ophthalmologist training: Rehabilitation for visual impairment and blindness

Too few people are still given the opportunity to continue to actively participate in life in the way that is individually possible for them, despite visual impairment or blindness caused by accidents, illness and/or age.

The advisory board of the SightCity Forum has set itself the task of providing information about existing ophthalmological rehabilitation services, bringing together the stakeholders involved and discussing new ways of implementing participation.

To this end, we cordially invite all specialist groups who are committed to the interests of visually impaired and blind people to take part in the third interdisciplinary specialist congress with ophthalmologist training organized by the SightCity Forum Advisory Board, either live or virtually.

As part of the specialist congress, we are offering you three focal points:

A look at neighboring disciplines or abroad shows that coordination by specifically trained people, so-called pilots or case managers, can be helpful for specific interdisciplinary care situations. In the first part of the congress, the case manager concepts of the Dutch Rehabilitation Clinic and the Rehabilitation Eye Clinic Masserberg will be presented. Based on this, the goals and possibilities of ensuring participation for ophthalmology patients with visual impairments are presented and the requirements for an ideal nationwide service for patient-individual coordination in Germany are discussed.

In an interactive part, we then invite scientists and project leaders to present their concepts, research and results on ophthalmologic rehabilitation in the form of posters. The presenters will discuss the posters on site with the participants in small groups.

The third focus of the specialist congress will be an ophthalmologist training session in the afternoon, which is of course also open to all other interested parties. The aim is to support ophthalmologists in familiarizing their visually impaired patients and those at risk of blindness with the wide range of services on offer, from training in practical life skills to psychological counselling. In various presentations, the legal framework for prescribing rehabilitation and the various elements of rehabilitative care will be presented, as well as a procedural model for drawing up a participation plan.

The SightCity Forum and the interdisciplinary specialist congress with further training for ophthalmologists are kindly supported financially by the Marga and Walter Boll Foundation and the Paul and Charlotte Kniese Foundation.


Beatrix Seeliger
ACTO e. V.
Karlsburgweg 9
52070 Aachen

Phone: 0241-997 41 80

SightCity: A beacon of inclusion and innovation

SightCity: a beacon of inclusion and innovation

SightCity in Frankfurt is much more than a trade fair – it is a center of innovation and a meeting place for people from all over the world who deal with aids and services for the blind and visually impaired. Since its first exhibition in 2003, SightCity has steadily developed into one of the most important events in this specialized field, bringing together experts, manufacturers and the target group itself to promote dialogue, knowledge exchange and knowledge gain. Originally created in response to the inadequate presentation of visual aids and technological innovations in this sector, the fair has evolved into a showcase for cutting-edge technology and social responsibility, providing an unparalleled platform for all those who are professionally or privately committed to improving the quality of life of visually impaired and blind people.

History and development

The history of SightCity is a chronicle of progress and dedication in the service of visual inclusion. The first SightCity took place in Frankfurt in 2003, at a time when the specific needs of people with visual impairments received little attention at general trade fairs. With an ambitious 36 exhibitors, a special focus was placed on innovative solutions and improved living standards for the target group. Over the following two decades, the trade fair grew continuously and established itself as the world’s largest event of its kind with more than 100 exhibitors from over 20 countries.

SightCity also survived the challenges of a global pandemic by adapting quickly and using digital trade fair formats. This demonstrated the resilience and commitment of the organizers, who kept the community connected and sharing information even in these difficult times. The history of SightCity is also one of continuous improvement and adaptation to ensure that the fair remains not only a place of presentation, but also of interaction, education and empowerment.

Outstanding innovations and offers

The heart of SightCity is undoubtedly the innovative products and services that are presented there. From advanced electronic visual aids and Braille printers to the latest developments in the field of digital assistance systems – SightCity serves as a showcase of possibilities. Groundbreaking solutions are regularly presented here that have the potential to make everyday life significantly easier for people with visual impairments and promote their independence.

In addition, the SightCity Forum offers a recognized symposium where scientists, physicians and experts can exchange ideas and share the latest findings. This valuable dialog promotes professional and social participation and thus also influences political decision-makers and legal frameworks with regard to the inclusion and support of people with visual impairments.

The SightCity Forum Advisory Board’s interdisciplinary specialist congress with ophthalmologist training will provide information on existing ophthalmological rehabilitation services, bring together the stakeholders involved and discuss new ways of implementing participation.

The 21st SightCity in 2024

SightCity 2024 embodies the commitment to accessibility and progress. This hybrid event, which will be accessible both on site in Frankfurt and digitally, will enable unprecedented interaction and accessibility. In addition to the physical trade fair experience, which promotes personal encounters and direct exchange, the digital dimension enables worldwide access to presentations, workshops and networking opportunities. This makes the 21st SightCity more than just a single event; it is a long-term platform for innovation from which people with visual impairments can benefit worldwide. With a special focus on accessibility and an offering that ranges from technological achievements to personal services, SightCity continues its journey as a pioneering event for visual inclusion.

Contact us

If you require any further information or have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us by telephone or e-mail.

You can reach us at the following times:

Monday to Thursday
08:30 - 16:30
8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Foto Dagmar Krutzki

Dagmar Krutzki

Managing Director SightCity