Dr Ruth Bartlett
University of Southampton
Using Global Positioning System (GPS) Technologies for Safer Walking: A participative inquiry project
Alzheimer's disease & other dementias
The purpose of this two-phase qualitative project is to examine the usage and effectiveness of Global Positioning System (GPS) technologies to promote safer walking from the standpoint of people with dementia and the police through a process of participative inquiry. It will address the question: How effective and acceptable are technologies for promoting safer walking to people with dementia and their families? In the first phase, qualitative information will be collected from samples using focus groups to explore usage and attitudes in relation to technologies for safer walking. In the second phase, go-along interviews will be used with a purposive sample of respondents with dementia to explore in more detail the range of possible ways technologies are utilised by people with dementia. Once data have been collected and analyzed using computer assisted software we will convene a multi-stakeholder workshop to review preliminary research findings and facilitate the process of co-producing practical guidance with the police, people with dementia and other key stakeholders. The overall objective is to provide fresh evidence to inform dementia care policy and practice related to finding effective measures to support people with dementia at home to stay connected with the outside world. In doing so, we hope to de-stigmatise the use of technologies for safer walking and improve outcomes of community care for the better by (a) empowering people with dementia and their supporters to take control and assert their rights in regard to personal mobility and b) providing high-quality information for decision makers to use.