User-driven housing for older people
In the near future it is expected that nearly a quarter of the population will be older than 65 years, and at present housing provision in Europe is insufficient to meet the needs and expectations of senior citizens. For example, many people ageing with disabilities live in dwellings with stairs at the entrance, without elevators, and also with many environmental barriers in the immediate outdoor surroundings.
Work package two of the Innovage project aimed to support older people to compare and evaluate housing options with regard to accessibility issues. The outcome was a new computer-based tool that raised the awareness for appropriate housing in old age, and empowered senior citizens to become more actively involved in decision-making in the context of housing provision.
Making use of a scientifically recognised methodology for accessibility assessments, the new tool targeted housing environments and their immediate surroundings based on modern, user-friendly information and communication technology.
During development and testing of the new computer-based tool, older people in several European countries were closely engaged as intended end users, but also public stakeholders involved in housing construction and housing provision took an active part in the process. Ultimately, the work package aimed to have an impact on housing policies and housing provision practices across Europe.
A series of research circles were undertaken to gather knowledge from older people to shape user needs for the computer-based tool for housing assessment.
Download the summary of findings (PDF, 21KB)
An article is available in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 'Cross-national user priorities for housing provision and accessibility – Findings from the European Innovage project'. Authored by partners in Sweden, Germany, Italy and Latvia, the article focuses on the knowledge about needs and expectations about housing options as expressed and prioritised by older people, people ageing with disabilities and professionals.