Senior men using a smartphone while sitting on grass in the park

The lived experience of using safer walking technology – supporting meaningful occupation and identity for people with early stage dementia

This research explores the lived experience of people with early stage dementia who have used GPS locating technologies to enable engagement in meaningful outdoor occupations. It is of a qualitative research design, incorporating interpretative phenomenological analysis of participant data, reflexive research strategies and published systematic literature reviews.
There is an emphasis on promoting the voice of people living with dementia, including meaningful co-design with a collaborative stakeholder group including older people and people with dementia, and online participant recruitment using social media and YouTube videos. Conducted in partnership with national charities The Alzheimer's Society and Dementia Adventure, and utilising the NIHR ‘Join Dementia Research’ database.

PhD Research Supervisors: Prof. Rob James, Coventry University; Prof. John Woolham, Kings College London; Prof. Gillian Ward, Royal College of Occupational Therapists and Dr. Carol Percy, Coventry University

The development of safer technology - a review

Wood, E. Ward, G. and Woolham, J. (2015),"The development of safer technology: a review", Journal of Assistive Technologies

Wood, E. Brooks, A. (2016) Dementia Study Recruitment Video. Coventry University, walking Coventry. Available at

Public involvement in research design

Developing a Stakeholder Advisory Group which included members of the public, older people and technology experts who were consulted as part of the project design.

Listening to the voice of people living with dementia

Ensuring the voice of people living with dementia and those who care for people living with dementia are heard. With a clear focus on understanding the individual experiences of each participant.

Informing clinical practice

Producing high quality research to enable health and social care practitioners can provide the best evidence-based services to people living with dementia.

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