Promises of prototyping
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Participatory prototyping of services was used in the development of home care services towards preventing displacement and loneliness of elderly persons. Together with the elderly users of the home ...

Participatory prototyping of services was used in the development of home care services towards preventing displacement and loneliness of elderly persons. Together with the elderly users of the home care service and the personnel of the home care crew we designed and implemented Palvelutupa (Service Cottage). Elders took part in communal actions once a week. These actions varied from recreational activities to lectures on daily issues such as nutrition or footwear advices. In addition to the social activities, a health check took place there.
Participants took part in the development of the concept for this service and also in the participatory prototyping that was run in the city premises during 8 days along 2 months.

The main elements of this service are transportation to the meeting place, taking part in structured activities, getting health care information and check, eating and spending free-time in a small group. Furthermore, participants had the change to influence in the future development of a service that could be implemented for a large amount of elders in the area. The combination of social activities with health related offerings is what makes this service distinctive. In addition, this case has the special characteristic that the person1 that has the initiative towards the creation of this service was within the organization, instead of being a designer working as a external consultant for the city. We believed in the sustainability of the endeavor because the designer instigating this initiative is part of the crew that could make this service real once the decision is made.

Though elder participants were informed about the temporary time spam for the prototype still the fact that the prototype seams like a real service and the shared wish (within participants and designers) to continue with it formed a promise of continuity. At the moment when we are waiting the decision from authorities to make this service real for a larger group, elders involved in the project call us in the search of company and comfort for their daily challenges. They call us claiming for the continuity of the service.

As designers we succeed in creating an empathic relationship with our end-users through these participatory prototypes, however we did not plan strategically the involvement of decision makers in the design process. People in the role of deciding the future of the project should be involved in the design process. There is a need for awareness and empathy not only for designing new services but also for fastening the speed of transfer the prototype into the implementation phase.

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Promises of prototyping Document Transcript

  • 1. Promises of Prototyping Selander Riikka Huvila-Nicklén Pirjo Meals and cleanliness in Service Manager Laurea University of Applied Sciences Torikatu 6-8, 05800 Hyvinkää, Finland Keskikatu 3a pirjo.huvila@hyvinkaa.fi 04200 Kerava, Finland +358 400 460 568 riikka.e.selander@laurea.fi +358 40 674 7907 Salgado Mariana Laurea University of Applied Sciences Keskikatu 3a 04200 Kerava, Finland mariana.salgado@laurea.fi +358 40 585 7727ABSTRACT temporary time spam for the prototype still the fact thatParticipatory prototyping of services was used in the the prototype seams like a real service and the shareddevelopment of home care services towards preventing wish (within participants and designers) to continue withdisplacement and loneliness of elderly persons. Together it formed a promise of continuity. At the moment whenwith the elderly users of the home care service and the we are waiting the decision from authorities to make thispersonnel of the home care crew we designed and service real for a larger group, elders involved in theimplemented Palvelutupa (Service Cottage). Elders took project call us in the search of company and comfort forpart in communal actions once a week. These actions their daily challenges. They call us claiming for thevaried from recreational activities to lectures on daily continuity of the service.issues such as nutrition or footwear advices. In addition tothe social activities, a health check took place there. As designers we succeed in creating an empathicParticipants took part in the development of the concept relationship with our end-users through thesefor this service and also in the participatory prototyping participatory prototypes, however we did not planthat was run in the city premises during 8 days along 2 strategically the involvement of decision makers in themonths. design process. People in the role of deciding the future of the project should be involved in the design process.The main elements of this service are transportation to the There is a need for awareness and empathy not only formeeting place, taking part in structured activities, getting designing new services but also for fastening the speed ofhealth care information and check, eating and spending transfer the prototype into the implementation phase.free-time in a small group. Furthermore, participants hadthe change to influence in the future development of a Author Keywordsservice that could be implemented for a large amount of Participatory prototyping, service design, home care,elders in the area. The combination of social activities elders, seniors, public sector.with health related offerings is what makes this servicedistinctive. In addition, this case has the special INTRODUCTIONcharacteristic that the person1 that has the initiative This work reflects on material gathered for a mastertowards the creation of this service was within the thesis in Laurea University of Applied Sciences done inorganization, instead of being a designer working as a collaboration with the city of Hyvinkää. Students haveexternal consultant for the city. We believed in the designed a service named Palvelutupa together withsustainability of the endeavor because the designer different stakeholders. The cost accounting done after theinstigating this initiative is part of the crew that could prototypes showed that the result does not increased costsmake this service real once the decision is made. for the city. This service fits patients that take part in home care services. In addition, Palvelutupa could be partThough elder participants were informed about the of preventive actions for elderly persons for whom thePermission to make digital or hard copies of all or part of this work for necessity of home care is already under consideration.personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies arenot made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage and that European Union’s theme for the year 2012 is ‘It is alwayscopies bear this notice and the full citation on the first page. To copy the right Age’. The purpose of the Theme Year is tootherwise, or republish, to post on servers or to redistribute to lists,requires prior specific permission and/or a fee. support elderly persons to notice that they have a right toPDC’12, 12-AUG-2012, Roskilde, Denmark. take part into activities of both the society and theirCopyright 2012 ACM ISBN 978-1-4503-0846-5/12/08…$10.00. current surroundings. Finland’s Council of State has been1 Manager of meals and cleanliness of the city of Hyvinkää, Finland. 1
  • 2. preparing the new ‘Health 2015’ program. The aim is to new service, implementation of a participatoryguarantee for elderly persons possibilities for independent prototypes, cost accountings and the observation andand high-quality living at their own home. However, analysis of all these phases. The following diagramseveral studies (1, 3, 6) indicate that elderly persons visualizes the process.living on their own feel lonely. This problem will beincreasing in Finland in the future too, because theestimated section of person’s older than 65 will be PARTICIPATORY PROTOTYPINGapproximately one third of the population by the year Palvelutupa prototype was in operation every Wednesday2060 (5). for two months. Two persons were in charge of organizing it and taking care of details of itsThe main research question in this study was how service implementation. For example, they called the elders thedesign and its methods could be adapted into the day before to remind them that a taxi would be waiting todevelopment process of the communal service. At the transport them to Palvelutupa at a certain time.same time, the aim was to find out whether Palvelutupacould support the everyday life and prevent displacement Every day has a certain theme and the activities plannedand loneliness. In this specific workshop we want to related to it. These themes came from the wishes of whatdiscuss issues concerning the ethical awareness of the elderly people had articulated in the interviews and fromconsequences of including elders with memory the workshop with the home care crew. The day began atdisfunction problems in taking part of the design of new ten o’clock in the morning and finished at two in theservices and particularly using participatory prototype. afternoon.In the current model of home care all the services that The participants asked for having the possibility to listenelderly peoples need are delivered to their homes which music, to sing psalms, to do gymnastic exercises, to havemeans in the worst case that the old person do not have some treat as a beauty care session and the mostnearly at all contacts to outer world. Therefore, the important: have time to drink coffee with others. All thesecurrent model provides a solution to the first needs of the was realized in addition to other activities that werepatients (receiving health care and food) but do not planned together with the home care crew such as the useresponds to the social needs such as getting to know new of crafting in combination with the topic of the lecture.people and having peers to talk and share their life. For example, the elders did a magnetic reminder for theirDuring these participatory sessions elders came to a home fridge that help each of them to realize a certain nutritionfor the elders once a week and they got social activities, advice that they wanted to work-out. For making thesehealth related information and check-ups and they activities possible we collaborate with the local schools,participate the design of a service. church and other service providers. As an example students from the local school of hairdressing came toDESIGNING A SERVICE offer their services to the participants.This service was a co-design process that involved eldersand home care and health care crew. First we did semi- After the morning guided activities they took lunchstructure theme interviews in elders homes using cards in together. The nurse from the home care came toorder to better understand their everyday life and elicit Palvelutupa in the afternoon and discussed with theconversation. Second, we have a workshop with the home customers asking how they felt, measured the bloodcare crew using doll’s house furniture, action cards and pressure and blood sugar and distributed the medicines.different types of pottering materials. During this Instead of going to everyone’s home separately the nurseworkshop we explore possibilities of activities and could take care of several customers at the same time.formats for the participatory prototype. Third, we analyze This came out to be very important to the elderly peoplethe results and the interviews and workshops using because the nurse had more time to spend and to listen toaffinity diagrams. At last, we designed this participatory them.prototype that lasted for two months. Each of themeetings days was planned with care to details and taking DISCUSSION ON METHODSin consideration that this special group of elders have It can be outlined that participatory prototyping methodmemory problems. is suitable to service development in the public sector. ItThe project covers many phases of the design process: supported empathy between the researchers and theanalysis of users needs and wishes, concept design of a participants. The participatory prototyping helped the designers, the care home crew and the health nurses to better understand elderly persons’ needs and wishes. The participatory prototype allow for spending time together and open the discussion to personal and intimate topics. The dialogue with the participants embrace emotional and practical aspects of elders everyday life. During the prototype sessions, it could be observed that the participants both cheered up and activated. Based on 2
  • 3. this study and the persons that took part, it can be stated have included home care specialists, nurses, otherthat the combination of social and health related activities external partners such as the local service providers andwere important factors increasing well-being. The feeling elders but we failed to invite decision makers. When theof being lonely had a significant downturn during the service relates to a community, all the participants in theprototype. community need to be consider as part of the design process.The methods used are original practices within theorganization. These workshops including visualizations We suggest that decision makers should be part of theelements are a new way to focus the discussion with design of services, in order to understand (bothhome care nurses and elders. Furthermore, to include the intellectually and emotionally) the fundamental needs andend-users, in this case the elders in the design of their wishes of the end-users, in this case the elders. In thefuture everyday living is not a practice for strategic public sector, specially in large organizations decisionplanning of future services. Strategic planners in large making processes are slow and elders need a quickorganizations such as cities do seldom consult end-users responses. We believe that if decision makers will be partfor coming up with new service solutions. These practices of this process the decisions will come quicker. However,need to be spread and further develop in order to motivate the way and the moment in which these persons aremore democratic services that are inclusive. This is an included in the design process is something that needsexample of a service design that is the result of an further discussion.initiative of city employees together with the end-users,therefore with a clear botton-up approach. We believe We endure our frustration because the decision of makingthat this approach could bring more democratic services this service available to the participants of the prototypesolutions. takes time. We agree with Suchmann (4) on “acknowledging and accepting the limited power of anyCONCLUSIONS actors or artifacts to control technology production/use”In this case, innovation is not sustained by examples of in and verified that this is also true in the context ofintroducing ICT to the elders but on proposing a new controlling the implementation of a service. Futhermore,service to stimulate their social life. This stimulation, as we also recognize the fake promises that our prototypewe have observed, can have an impact into their health arose into participants.condition. If the problems of these elderly persons areisolation and loneliness, a service in which they can meet REFERENCESothers is the right answer. These complex problems canhave simple solutions once there is a research on 1. Airila, A. Virikkeet pitävät yllä toimintakykyä.organizational resources, wishes and needs. Furthermore, Manninen, H. (toim.) Kuntouttavaa kotielämää.peer networks have long been the answer to many people Kuntoa arjen toimista ja apuvälineistäwith different diseases and addictions. Palvelutupa ikäihmisille. Helsinki: Eläkeliitto. 2005.motivates the formation of a peer network of elders in the 2. Daria Cantu, Marta Corubolo, Giulia Simeone.same area. Due to the mobility limitation elders face these (2012). A Community Centered Designtype of local networks are beneficial. In the case of elders approach to develop service prototypes. Feedingwith health issues related to memory disfunction the Milan as a living lab. Service Designsupport of peer networks is of vital importance. Conference. 3. Kannisto, U. & Usvajärvi, R. (2009).As designers we believe in the importance of growing an Yksinäisyyden tunteen lievittyminenempathic relation with our partners during the design and ystäväpiiriryhmä-toiminnan tuloksenadevelopment of the service. However, the relations are Janakkalassa – Tutkimus ryhmäänfed over time and prototyping has a short life spam. After osallistuneiden vanhusten kokemuksista.the prototyping face is over the design outcome, in this Hämmenlinna: Hämeen ammattikorkeakoulu.case the Palvelutupa service, might be run by other 4. Suchman, L. (2003). Located Accountabilities inactors. Therefore the empathic relation is discontinued. In Technology Production. Centre for Sciencethe cases of working with elders with memory problems Studies, Lancaster University,, UK, atit could be beneficial to aim for the continuity of therelation having the same team involved with them for a 5. Stadiistics of Finland. Population. 12.4.2012.long period of time. Temporality is a vital issue when http://www.stat.fi/tup/suoluk/suoluk_vaesto.htmldesigning for empathy. #perheet 6. Uotila, H. (2011). Vanhuus jaWhen we talked about involving different stakeholders in yksinäisyys.Tutkimus iäkkäiden ihmistenservice design it is important to pose again the question yksinäisyyskokemuksista, niiden merkityksistäon who to include in this process. This approach aligns ja tulkinnoista. Akateeminen väitöskirja.with the work of Cantu (1) that presents the concept of Tampere: Tampereen yliopisto.community centered design. This project embraces thewhole community involved in the service and it is notonly based on the selection of one group of users. We 3
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