It's our kick off! A big welcome to the students and guests to the Design Research Space /Open Design Space #5. A fantastic day introducing the students to our Grey but Mobile research and building enthusiasm for their adventure to come. 

David Hamers kicked off our stream of guests with a compelling presentation about the value of Design Research for innovation, but also for policy making and building knowledge. Hilde den Biemen followed by introducing how designers can work with knowledge about their target group.

In order to get the students into the mindset of designing with elderly people, Maartje and I designed what we call "An Empathic Adventure". This is an adventure that allows people to experience physically and mentally the mobility needs, wishes and situation of elderly people living at home. It is the combination of a suit that restricts movement, headphones with an mp3 track filling your head with thoughts, and a task to accomplish. After a short introduction to Grey but Mobile, the students embarked on a journey to get lunch ingredients by bus. Their adventure created strong reactions and insights by the students and created plenty of enthusiasm for the assignment to come.

“I had to focus on one thing at a time, step-by-step”
“I should have thought this through better, planning becomes really important”
“I was happy when my shoelace was untied because I could stop and take a break.”
“A road can feel really long.”
“He was clumsy and slow, and was bothering people”
“The only person who got up to help me get on the bus was an elderly woman!”
“It felt uncomfortable to ask for help.”
“The world goes faster than I do.”
“The green light wasn’t long enough, and you don’t see if cars are coming.”
"As an elderly person you feel so busy with these small details.”

We offered the students our research framework (see photos) to introduce how we work with mobility stories we hear and capture, which will also be the process they embark on during this ODS. You can seen in the diagram that we begin with the combination of designer and elderly person, this is done through interviews, generative research tools, and are documented through film and photography. The outcome of this is a collection of mobility stories in the form of micro-stories, or short films, together with thorough mobility personas about the participants. These stories are brought to the table with our project partners in an active collaborative analysis process (workshop) to identify potential PSS design opportunities.

Next week the students will design their own methods within this framework as preparation for some fieldwork. We will also meet Yanki Lee via a Skype lecture about design research in the field of ageing, as well as Hubert Cornelis who will offer insight into working in the elderly home care field. 


Published: 20-Sep-2013 15:58


Grey but Mobile
  • ODS Day#5 Day 1: Kick-off!


  • ODS Day#5 Day 1: Kick-off!


  • ODS Day#5 Day 1: Kick-off!

    DAE Gbm Research Framework