Robots for Dementia - Collaboration with TU Delft

To boost the production of product-service systems in the health domain, SELEMCA recently started collaboration with TU Delft to design robots that support independent living of the elderly (those with light dementia). Fifteen keen master students of advanced concept-design are challenged to come up with individual robot designs that  1) let elderly live their lives independently by helping out in daily house chores and physical activities, 2) provide cognitive support by organizing the agenda, triggering memories, training of cognitive functions, do riddles and games, 3) stimulate activity by offering new physical or mental events, motivation of healthy behavior, etc. First, students investigate the context of use, trying to understand the potential users in terms of needs, culture, their technology use, and constraints. In the second phase, they will produce a number of Caredroid concepts, which will be evaluated on practical feasibility. The role of design is changing: Instead of producing robot embodiments (‘nice casings’), effort is oriented at facilitation of and empathy with the user in the development of innovative services.

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Wang Long Li