USER INVOLVEMENT IN PRODUCT DESIGN PRACTICES: A CASE STUDY ON TECHNOLOGIES FOR OLDER ADULTS
Editor: Christian Weber, Stephan Husung, Gaetano Cascini, Marco CantaMESsa, Dorian Marjanovic, Monica Bordegoni
Author: Lee, Chaiwoo; Coughlin, Joseph F.
Institution: MIT AgeLab, United States of America
Section: User-Centred Design, Design of Socio-Technical Systems
Recent efforts to address challenges brought by the aging of the population have looked at technology as a possible solution. In order to effectively deliver value and benefits, it has been suggested that the design of technology for older adults need to be based on proper understanding of the population s needs and expectations with user-centered approaches. This study examines two examples of hardware and software technologies developed to address older adults needs to stay healthy, independent and socially connected. Based on findings from in-depth interviews, documents and observation of physical artifacts, this paper presents detailed descriptions of the two cases. The case descriptions include design activities, managerial decisions and user involvement practices carried out throughout the process from planning and development to distribution. Implications for design of products targeted at older adults, as well as insights for development of interactive systems in general, are discussed.