DATHA Lecture: Katie Brittain, Newcastle University

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The Design and Technologies for Healthy Aging would like to invite you to the second meeting of Fall 2012. Katie Brittain from Newcastle University UK, who has been invited to Georgia Tech by Dr. Gregory Abwod as part of the GVU 20th Anniversary, will join us to discuss her digital technology projects on social inclusion for older adults.

Katie Brittain will specifically talk about "How ageing and what it means to be old are framed within the HCI community and opportunities for future research". Aging has become a significant area of interest within HCI. In her presentation, she will provide a critical analysis on 30 years of research published at ACM CHI on ageing. An analysis of the content of 199 archival papers highlights how ageing is typically framed as a problem that can be managed by technology. The problem of ageing is typically focused on declines in ability, healthcare needs and concerns about social isolation. She draws from thinking within the discipline of social gerontology to problematize the prevailing discourse within HCI on what it means to age. She will outline five challenges and propose an agenda for future research at the intersection of aging and computing based upon social gerontology theories. She will conclude the presentation by discussing the new research questions that arise and the resulting methodological implications that emerge from this critique.

The meeting will be held at Room 207 in the Health Systems Institute (HSI) Building, located at 828 West Peachtree Street, NW 2nd Floor Atlanta, GA 30332. Metered parking is available at the address.

Katie Brittain is a social gerontologist and an experienced quantitative and qualitative researcher. Her educational background in applied sociology has enabled her to pursue her research interests in the application of these research methods in order to look at the social impact that illness can have on the lives of older people. During her time as a researcher she has researched and published widely around the impact of ill health on older people and carers. More recently her work has focused around how aspects of the physical, social and technological environment pose challenges and opportunities for older people and their wider community. She was recently awarded an EPSRC ‘Discipline Hop’ that has allowed her to explore the relationship between assistive technologies, pervasive computing and place attachment for older people inside and outside of the home.


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