A Design-Led Inquiry into Parametric Product Design for Dementia Care

Funder: AHRC


Team: Henry Collingham, Abigail Durrant, John Vines


Timeframe: 2017-2021

This PhD research, led by Henry Collingham, explores how the role the principles of Parametricism – the development of dynamic designs within defined rules and variables – may contribute to creative design interventions in dementia care settings. Thus far, the research has focused on the role such design processes may play in the creation of tools, artefacts and materials that are used to facilitate creative engagement and expression from people with dementia. Working closely with artists from Equal Arts, a creative ageing charity, we’ve been observing the ways artists facilitate creative workshops with care home residents and the role materials play in opening up and supporting residents to express themselves in ways that they feel comfortable with. Based on insights from participant-observation in care homes, we’ve been producing a set of artefacts – a toolkit – that is open-ended enough to be used by artists across a range of settings, but still enable self-expression and autonomy from care home residents.



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------- Publications related to this project:

Collingham, H, Durrant, A & Vines, J 2020, Making In The Moment: Insight from Participatory Arts for Co-Design Practice in Dementia Care Settings. in K Christer, C Craig & P Chamberlain (eds), Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Design4Health. vol. 1, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, pp. 78-85, DESIGN4HEALTH 2020, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1/07/20. <https://research.shu.ac.uk/design4health/publications/2020-conference-proceedings>