Sensor e-Textiles: person centred co-design for people with late stage dementia
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This paper presents design research investigating the development of sensory textiles with embedded electronics to support the wellbeing of people with late stage dementia in residential care. The research presented is qualitative and uses a mixed method approach informed by grounded practical theory and positive design methodologies. It uses an inclusive and participatory co-design process involving people with dementia and their families with an interdisciplinary team of experts. Both the co-design process and the artefacts developed have been beneficial in supporting wellbeing. The textile artefacts have been found to sooth, distract and comfort people with dementia. They have also been shown to facilitate in the moment conversational bridges between family members and carers with people with dementia. The findings are based on a small cohort of participants, observational reports and descriptive accounts from family members and carers. The paper proposes ways in which simple hand crafted textiles can be used beneficially to support wellbeing and provides examples of how technology can be used to personalise and extend the sensory properties of the artefacts created. It promotes an inclusive co-design methodology involving care professionals, carers and people with dementia with designers and technologists. The paper describes new ways of extending sensory properties of textiles through the integration of technology.
Working with Older People
Treadaway, C. & Kenning, G. (2016) 'Sensor e-Textiles: person centred co-design for people with late stage dementia', Working with Older People, 20 (2): pp.76-85.
This article was published in Working with Older People in January 2016, (online), available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/WWOP-09-2015-0022
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