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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/K037293/1
Title: BESiDE - The Built Environment for Social Inclusion in the Digital Economy
Principal Investigator: Hanson, Professor V
Other Investigators:
Watson, Professor P Lim, Dr S White, Ms H
Reed, Professor C McMurdo, Professor M
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr LJ McIntyre
Project Partners:
Balhousie Care Group BUPA Collective Architecture Limited
Healthfield Residential Home Ltd
Department: Computing
Organisation: University of Dundee
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 October 2013 Ends: 31 March 2017 Value (£): 1,301,189
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Construction Environment
Transport Systems and Vehicles
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
05 Mar 2013 EPSRC Design for Well Being Full Panel Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
BESiDE's research asks the question: How can the built environment facilitate physical activity and wellbeing in care homes? Our goal is to transform the network of stakeholders involved in care environments into a virtuous cycle of design improvement, in which architects, professional bodies, academics, policy makers, charities, and care home providers are all motivated to pursue improvement in the built environment for older adults.

With changes in population demographics resulting in a growing number of care homes, economic, health and ethical considerations demand that attention be directed to effective means of creating an enabling built environment to provide older adults with healthy and socially fulfilling lives. This research addresses a significant knowledge gap focussed on measures to mitigate problems and enhance the experience of older people within the built environment.

A fundamental impact of ageing is that a person's needs and abilities change; however, the built environment is failing to respond to these changes. Despite current legislative statutes and design guidance, little is known from empirical evidence (generated by older people, their family and care providers) about enabling and disabling elements of the built environment. These elements have never been defined to support the advancement of building and digital technology design. Through systematic analysis of the failings and successes of older people's care environments, BESiDE research will identify how better-informed building design can facilitate greater mobility, physical activity, social connectedness and wellbeing of older people. BESiDE's aims are to:

1) Actively involve and inform professional practices of architecture and design through research focussed on failings and successes of the built environment (internal and external) across the experience of ageing.

2) Impact professional practice through developing digital technologies within the built environment to promote greater mobility, improved quality of life, physical activity and connectivity of older people.

3) Inform policy, through BESiDE's Advisory Board and Project Partners, as to what designs and digital interventions encourage activity and how these can be engineered to facilitate increased wellbeing in older people.

Collaboration across disciplines of computing, architecture, healthcare, medicine of old age and design will drive this work forward and build the UK's capability in supporting older people within the built environment. Engagement with older people and stakeholders will shape understanding of barriers to wellbeing within the built environment.
Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.dundee.ac.uk