Below is documentation of DESIGN+CARE, the annual Industrial Design Seminar from 2011. This includes videos of public lectures given during the morning session of the seminar, as well as preparatory materials and photographs from the afternoon program of internal activities for Konstfack students. There is also written documentation of notes and reflections taken by the seminar organizers. We regret that the visual quality is unfortunately not optimal, due to an unexpected technical fault with the video equipment.
The afternoon program for the ID Seminar took place as hands-on concept development workshops with the bachelors and masters level industrial design students. There were three general topics for the workshop – Future Wellbeing, Rethinking Healthcare, Status and Inclusiveness – which were rooted in findings from the research project “Design inom vård och omsorg” at Konstfack. These topics were further developed in terms of more specific themes for group-work, the design brief, documentation and outcomes of which are described below.
We explore visions, artifacts and services as dream scenarios for the future of healthcare, including elderly homes and focus on health overall. Themes for group tasks include ‘the perfect healthcare experience’, ‘future elderly care’, ‘design as a preventive act’.
Organizer: Jennie Johansson
Summary/Insights of outcomes:
- Healthcare dreams: Easing patient stress, alternative medicine, move attention from treating illness to prevention, health orientation not illness orientation, equal for everybody, more self treatment at home, improve the environment at the hospitals.
- Elderly care: affordable, staff role from technical or mechanical to proactive and interactive, personalized attention and social games. Something everybody can afford, the elderly has to feel that they have a purpose and that they are needed.
To make real changes within healthcare, organizational change might be needed at the level of services, policies, etc. Themes for group tasks include "personalized healthcare", "journals and patient information", "design as a political party".
Organizer: Andreij Nylander
Rethinking Health Care.pdf
Summary/Insights of outcomes:
- Patient information: why people want or need to go the hospital, how to centralize behavior, information as open-source such that patients can see and add, public and private aspects.
- Step-by-step proposal for emergency room system/service, "screaming rooms", modulate options for seeing and being seen, individualized versus team-based care. We need hosts that take care of the waiting patients. It is important to be seen, to have comfortable and relaxing waiting rooms.
Status and Inclusiveness
Living with disability or working with long-term care services has unique challenges, which we explore in terms of design. The themes included: "working with care" (status of those employed to work with the elderly), "aid for aid devices" (better working and looking aid devices), "blind design collective".
Organizer: Tove Thambert
Status and Inclusiveness.pdf
Summary/Insights of outcomes:
- Care workers: soft skills, hard to earn respect, instead of hiding old or sick, include or show them as people, give the staff more respect and responsibility, "nursing portfolio" that can be earned and used to advance career, mentoring, not being kind (Dr. House), provide the care workers with courses so they feel that they develop and learn new things, more time to get to know the persons they are treating
- Aid devices: how not to feel stigmatized, should it "fit all" or customizable, it may be more dignified to be honest about differences, 3 directions demonstrated in the design of 3 walkers.
Summary of Highlights from the Day
In human-centered healthcare, design can play an important role, which is the idea underlying the seminar today. A range of questions and themes emerged, which were addressed within the presentations by guest lecturers in the morning program, explored in concept workshops among students in the afternoon program, and discussed throughout the day. Together, we discussed: What are some considerations from the health and care perspectives for designers? What is the role of design in healthcare? What is needed to work in this area? What do we need to know, learn, do as designers? How can healthcare have a better understanding of design? And vice versa? What kinds of collaborative setups work for innovation in this area? What research and design methods are needed?
Some research and design perspectives included: Caring actions include prevention of disease, dignity, existential and ethical aspects. Caring science looks at “human experience and reactions in their life situation.” There are positive as well as negative effects of having a health condition. There is a need to move from reactionary or cure-based solutions or preventative and long-term thinking. Care dimensions: Self care – Professional care – Community care. We need to care for the ‘whole’ person, in the long term, across multiple environments. The experience of the care environment (material and multi-sensory aspects) affects wellbeing. Problems in the healthcare area are complex or ‘wicked’, involving not just technical but social, psychological and cultural variables. Even ergonomic aspects go beyond the physical – consider cognitive and emotional aspects. Besides tools and technologies, or Human-Computer interaction, we need to design for Human-Human interaction, for relations of patients to specialists, peers and partners. Healthcare is a high-risk area to work with large stakes – different scales of design intervention may have different ethical aspects. The system can be against change, working in (and funding) this area is hard.
Collaboration in this area might include: Multi-professional teams ; Super-specialists, Super-users ; Health related experts: nurses, social workers, psychologists, pediatric oncologists, doctors, surgeons, janitors, receptionists, business management, public sector stakeholders (Hjälpmedelsinstitutet, etc.) ; Design related experts: industrial designers, interaction designers, service designers, human-computer interaction, engineers, architecture, theater...
Some methods discussed included: Interviews, questionnaires, diaries, rapid-prototyping, ‘beta-test’ with prototypes, low-tech and high-tech prototypes, visioning, sketching, participatory co-design ; These materials can be part of collaborations in which designers transplanted into clinical setting (and vice versa) or in which ‘what if’ visions are co-developed together with specialists/users. Doctors and surgeons can learn new things by researching/developing with designers.
Some key ideas emerged: “Design might not be invited – but it is needed!” Just start doing it – show the value of design by example. We need to develop perspectives and methods for solving the problems of tomorrow. Design can provide tools for decision-making. The systems The role for design in healthcare points to a larger role for design in social innovation and cultural invention.
Topics in the discussion
- There are some issues with respect to ethics. Who should be able to access, see, alter patient information? This is sensitive and potentially dangerous information, but patients may need to have more transparency and power. Empowering people might also mean they have additional responsibility (and burden of responsibility)
- There is a huge need for work (and there will be huge money in) the elderly care area. There are structural problems of (short-term low-status) employment in (long-term) elderly care. A design role is to visualize solutions and futures, “because my grandma can’t” but it needs to be done!
- Be proud and show what design can do. Design benefits and validity can be hard to grasp and measure. It may need statistics and evaluation to back up arguments to scientists/technicians in the (evidence-based) healthcare area. Cases can also be a way to demonstrate. There is a need for networking and mentoring for design to work in this area.