Effective Communication Between Researchers and Older Users in Developing Design-Led Fit            for Purpose Products. ...
A Changing Society• The numbers of over 60’s  are predicted to double to  around 30% over the next 2  decades Source: ISPO...
Lost Technology   Mobile apps                    Conductive                        Bluetooth                              ...
http://us.123rf.com/400wm/400/400/logos/logos0904/logos090400997/4649059.jpg                    ISG 7th World Conference •...
A New Research Model                               ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30          hosted by Simon Fraser Un...
Issues with differing Methodologies, language/terminology                                                                 ...
Meaningful qualitative user engagement                                        ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30        ...
Strategies for interaction between researchers and older users                                                   ISG 7th W...
ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
Semi-structured interviews                                  ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30             hosted by Sim...
ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
Sharing the Technical Language                                    ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30               hoste...
Communication of design attributes and      technical applications                                        ISG 7th World Co...
ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
Conclusions                           ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30      hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontol...
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Effective Communication Between Researchers and Older Users in Developing Design-Led Fit for Purpose Products

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A paper prepared for presentation at the ISG 7th World Conference in Vancouver 2010. The paper presented issues uncovered in early stages of the research being undertaken by the Smart Clothes and Wearable Technology research centre at the University of Wales Newport as part of the New Dynamics of Ageing - Design for Ageing Well Project

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  • The UK population is ageing, in 2003 some 16% of the UK population was estimated to be over the age of 65 years whilst in 2031 this figure is said to rise to just over 23% (UK government actuary department 2004). Combined with funding pressures this is driving an increased drain on national health and social services.Maintaining activity into later life is essential for health and wellness and the lack of suitable clothing has been highlighted as a potential barrier to activity into and throughout old age. The ISPO Best Ager Sports Market Study [1] found that the over 50’s have difficulty finding suitable clothing that is fit for purpose and that they are willing to and want to wear, from technical, aesthetic and cultural perspectives. However, these age groups make up more than 56% of the sports market (pie chart)
  • Technology is out there but it is not getting through to older users, examples of this include; smart phones and mobile apps, physiological monitoring sensors in clothing, awareness of Bluetooth and 3G technologies, technical fabrics including terminology such as; hydrophilic, hydrophobic, breathable, soft shell, photochromatic, conductive, wicking, antimicrobial, Technology is pushed into the market rather than being driven by user needs, as a result products suffer from a lack of sustainable continuityAs a result older users struggle to discover and meaningfully engage with relevant technology which has the potential to enhance their lives in terms of autonomy and independence.
  • So the question arises, how do we get older users to benefit from emerging technologiesWe need to work with the older users to develop the products and services to suit their needs and requirements But to do this we need to be able to communicate effectively an array of technical terms
  • Design for Ageing Well’ approaches design, research and development, from a cross-disciplinary, user-centered design perspective; a concept not commonly seen in traditional apparel design.  It aims to work with user-groups to develop and test concepts for a functional clothing layering system, with embedded technologies, that older people will willingly wear with a focus on walking.This will be done by the establishment of complementary work packages, with close working relationships between PhD students, researchers and an advisory group of industry specialists and consultants, to examine the current methodologies and terminologies within each separate discipline to amalgamate knowledge gained in order to achieve the development of a new breed of cross-disciplinary researcher. In addition, a shared language is being developed to inform clothing design development, in collaboration with researchers and older users, that breaks down the boundaries between the disparate disciplines of design and technology driven by eliciting and addressing the social culture demands of older usersAs a first step communication between the providers of technology and the users of this age group has to be enhanced: by developing a shared language, one founded upon alignment of capacity with function. This will lead to increased usability, less design redundancy and aligned technology matching the needs of an ageing population to the functional range of supporting technology.
  • While a cross-disciplinary approach is desirable, this does not come without issues of its own. Individual disciplines all use unique approaches to working which best suit the individual subject area. ClothingClothing and clothing design adopt a more iterative research methodology which has similarities to a trial and error programme with the focus of achieving an end goal. Research of this nature is predominantly qualitative with activities including focus and user groups, usability testing and participatory design. TechnologyDesign and development of technology typically focuses on the generation of functional data sets through the collection and statistical analysis of controlled variables. While test subjects are used, they are often not drawn from a pool of suitable end users.BehaviourTo assess behaviour, traditional sociological research methods are generally favoured and analysed using both qualitative and quantitative approaches. Methods of data collection include questionnaires, interviews and focus groups.The goal is to develop sophisticated visual and text based empirical data outputs and extensive experiential based knowledge sets to underpin successful product development.
  • The setting up of user groups demands significant preparation, not normal in traditional fashion design. Issues such as: -ethical procedures, identifying the user groups, invitation letters, suitable directions, timing, hospitality, chairing the user groups appropriately all need to be given thorough consideration to ensure that user groups run smoothly.
  • Where do we start when trying to design for older users?Show and tell - what do they use already? users were encouraged to bring in examples of their existing clothing to stimulate discussion surrounding what works and doesn’t work, highlight features and functions that they are interested in or have problems with.
  • Example of user demonstrating poor functionality, specifically excessive hood volume with no adjustment
  • Focus groups highlighted the importance of the mix of visual, verbal and text based feedback from users.This is an example of user who felt compelled to visually describe her needs
  • Deeper behavioural interviews can be used to elicit and verify greater detail
  • New researchers liaising with experts to identify a common language and verify it in deeper detail
  • Users and researchers engaging in technical workshops in order to develop common language across the disciplines
  • Industrialists and cross-disciplinary researchers were invited in to share technical knowledge and related terminology in a language suitable for older users. Users were encouraged to question and challenge marketing hype versus scientific reality
  • In depth discussion of the functionality of the mobile phone as a potential user interface
  • Showing the wider functionality of the mobile phone as a potential interface
  • *Interaction between researchers, experts and users with industry support is critical to carry out cross-disciplinary with a potential route to marketThese initial workshops have identified a significant amount of data that is enlightening and in many instances surprising Further work will involve deeper investigation as well as participating on walks with user groups to gather further and deeper information We hope by the end of this project we are not all wearing navy blue!
  • Effective Communication Between Researchers and Older Users in Developing Design-Led Fit for Purpose Products

    1. 1. Effective Communication Between Researchers and Older Users in Developing Design-Led Fit for Purpose Products. 1Altemeyer B, 2McCann J, 3Nugent C, 2Stevens K, 2Taylor D 1 University of Westminster, 2 University of Wales, Newport,3 University of Ulster ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    2. 2. A Changing Society• The numbers of over 60’s are predicted to double to around 30% over the next 2 decades Source: ISPO Best Ager study 2009 ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    3. 3. Lost Technology Mobile apps Conductive Bluetooth Physiological monitoringAntimicrobial Wicking HydrophilicSoft shell Thermal regulation Photochromatic Cloud computing Base layer Hydrophobic Breathable 3G Smart phone AccelerometerSource: Design for Ageing Well user workshop, 29.01.2010 ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    4. 4. http://us.123rf.com/400wm/400/400/logos/logos0904/logos090400997/4649059.jpg ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30http://www.worldofstock.com/slides/BTE1584.jpg hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    5. 5. A New Research Model ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    6. 6. Issues with differing Methodologies, language/terminology Functional Data Set GatheringIterative Research Quantitative:Methods Clothing Technology •StatisticalPredominantly •ControlledQualitative: •Variables•Focus / User Groups •No user function tests•Usability Testing•Participatory Design Behaviour Sociological Research Methods Quantitative & Qualitative: •Questionnaires (Quant) •Interviews (Qual) •Focus Groups (Qual) Sophisticated empirical data outputs and extensive experiential based knowledge sets are needed ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    7. 7. Meaningful qualitative user engagement ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    8. 8. Strategies for interaction between researchers and older users ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    9. 9. ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    10. 10. ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    11. 11. Semi-structured interviews ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    12. 12. ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    13. 13. ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    14. 14. Sharing the Technical Language ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    15. 15. Communication of design attributes and technical applications ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    16. 16. ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre
    17. 17. Conclusions ISG 7th World Conference • May 27-30 hosted by Simon Fraser University Gerontology Research Centre

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