Interdisciplinary perspectives on designing, understanding and evaluating digital technologies for autism

Parsons, Sarah, Yuill, Nicola, Brosnan, Mark and Good, Judith (2017) Interdisciplinary perspectives on designing, understanding and evaluating digital technologies for autism. Journal of Enabling Technologies, 11 (1). pp. 13-18. ISSN 2398-6263

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Abstract

Purpose
Interdisciplinary perspectives and collaboration in technology research are regarded as vital for producing effective and usable solutions that meet real needs. The purpose of this paper is to draw upon the fifth seminar in an Economic and Social Research Council funded series in the UK on “Innovative Technologies for Autism”. This seminar focused on the contributions that different disciplines can make to the field of autism and technology, and offers some interesting avenues for future research.

Design/methodology/approach
A synthesis of key messages from the speakers’ talks is presented, interspersed with comments and observations from delegates which were written on post-it notes during the day and shared amongst the group.

Findings
Interdisciplinarity can be conceptualised in many different ways and is not simply about academic contributions. Collaborative research involving genuine stakeholder participation can provide fertile grounds for respecting and exploring individual differences and needs. Investigating the uses of existing technologies as well as developing innovative ideas and prototypes through inclusive design are important avenues for future research.

Originality/value
This paper offers a rare glimpse into a range of perspectives within a broad field of research and draws out some important connections between these different viewpoints. There are valuable avenues for collaboration and further exploration that would extend research in productive ways.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Stakeholders, Technology, Interdisciplinary, Design, Autism, Participatory
Schools and Departments: School of Engineering and Informatics > Informatics
School of Psychology > Psychology
Research Centres and Groups: Creative Technology
Depositing User: Judith Good
Date Deposited: 08 Aug 2018 14:10
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2019 15:00
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/77522

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Project NameSussex Project NumberFunderFunder Ref
Innovative technologies for autism: critical reflections on digital bubblesG1607ESRC-ECONOMIC & SOCIAL RESEARCH COUNCILES/M002624/1