The Role of Designers in the Development and Communication of New Technology

  • Yvonne ErikssonEmail author
  • Marie Sjölinder
Part of the Human–Computer Interaction Series book series (HCIS)


People who experience a loss of physical abilities due to an ageing body are still capable of using, learning, and interacting with information and communications technology (ICT) and being part of the digitalization of society. The following chapter will enlighten the role of design for facilitating the support of and interest in using various kinds of technology. Design and communication are in many ways effected by stereotypical attitudes towards an older target group. In addition, the attitudes often lack conscious awareness among designers of ICT. However, they affect the user´s experience of the technology and the self-image in relation to technology usage. It might not be age that hinders people from taking part in and using new technology. How technology is designed, communicated, and marketed play an important role too. Therefore, we recommend more awareness and responsibility among designers.


  1. Aesaert K, van Braak J (2015) Gender and socio-economic related differences in performance based ICT competences. Comput Educ 84:8–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Blessing L, Chakrabarti A (2009) DRM, a Design Research Methodology. Springer VerlagGoogle Scholar
  3. Broady T, Chan A, Caputi P (2010) Comparison of older and younger adults’ attitudes towards and abilities with computers: implications for training and learning. Br J Edu Technol 41(3):473–485. Scholar
  4. Brown A, Draper P (2003) Accommodative speech and terms of endearment: elements of a language mode often experienced by older adults. J Adv Nurs 41(1):15–21. Scholar
  5. Crilly N, Maier A, Clarkson PJ (2008) Representing artefacts as media: modelling the relationship between designer intent and consumer experience. Int J Des 2(3):15–27Google Scholar
  6. Cuddy AJC, Norton MI, Fiske ST (2005) This old stereotype: the pervasiveness and persistence of the elderly stereotype. J Soc Issues 61(2):265–283CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. DeFalco A (2009) Uncanny subjects. Columbus: The Ohio Univeristy PressGoogle Scholar
  8. Durick J, Robertson T, Brereton M et al (2013) Dispelling ageing myths in technology design. In: Proceedings of the 25th Australian computer-human interaction conference: augmentation, application, innovation, collaboration, pp 467–476Google Scholar
  9. Dyck JL, Smither JA (1994) Age differences in computer anxiety: the role of computer experience, gender and education. J Educ Comput Res 10(3):239–248CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Eliassen AH (2016) Power relations and health care communication in older adulthood: educating recipients and providers. Gerontologist 56(6):990–996. Scholar
  11. För digitalisering i tiden. SOU 2016:89— (with a summary in English).Google Scholar
  12. Goffman E (1959) The presentation of self in everyday life.
  13. Kelly CL, Charness N (1995) Issues in training older adults to use computers. Behav Inf Technol 14(2):107–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Kubeck JE, Miller-Albrecht SA, Murphy MD (1999) Finding information on the World Wide Web: exploring older adult’s exploration. Educ Gerontechnology 25:167–183CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Longhurst B, Smithe G, Bagnall G et al (2017) Introducing cultural studies. Routledge, LondonGoogle Scholar
  16. Mead SE, Sit RA, Rogers WA et al (2000) Influences of general computer experience and age on library database search performance. Behav Inf Technol 19(2):107–123CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Nikou S (2015) Mobile technology and forgotten consumers: the young-elderly. Int J Consum Stud 39(14):294–304CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Östlund B (1999) Images, users, practices—senior citizens entering the IT-society. KFB-Rapport 1999:9Google Scholar
  19. Oudshoorn N, Neven L, Stienstra M (2016) How diversity gets lost: age and gender in design practices of information and communication technologies. J Women Aging 28(2):170–185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Oyserman D (2015) Culture as situated cognition. In: Scott RA, Kosslyn SM (eds) Emerging trends in the social and behavioral science.
  21. Righi V, Sayago S, Blat J (2012) Older people’s use of social network sites while participating in local online communities from an ethnographical perspective. In: CIRN 2012 Community informatics conference: ideals meet realityGoogle Scholar
  22. Sayago S, Rosales A, Righi V, Ferreira SM, Coleman GW, Blat J (2016) On the conceptualization, design, and evaluation of appealing, meaningful, and playable digital games for older people. Games Cult 11(1–2):53–80CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Sjölinder M, Höök K, Nilsson L-G (2003) The effect of age-related cognitive differences, task complexity and prior internet experience in the use of an on-line grocery shop. Spat Cogn Comput 3(1):61–84CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Turkle S (2011) Life on screen. Identity in the age of internet. Simon & Shuster Paperbacks, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  25. Weerakkody V, Dwivedi Y, El-Haddadeh R et al (2012) Conceptualizing e-inclusion in Europe: an explanatory study. Inf Syst Manag 29:205–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Mälardalen UniversityEskilstuna/VästeråsSweden
  2. 2.RISE SICSKistaSweden

Personalised recommendations