NESTORE is a virtual coach that aims to answer the preferences and wishes of its user. Following a participatory approach, potential users have been been involved in both the design and the validation of the different components of NESTORE. Further validation and testing are currently ongoing in three pilot sites in Italy, the Netherlands and Spain
Finding ways to design with people is at the heart of the research underpinning NESTORE. Since the project began, researchers in Lab4Living (Sheffield, UK) have been sharing their experience and expertise of co-design with colleagues on the project in Italy, Spain and the Netherlands. Colleagues in these countries have built confidence in this methodology and have facilitated a number of workshops.
Refining the methodology
About 80 adults have been invited in the UK to elicit participant experiences and to scaffold conversation following the ‘exhibition-in-a-box’ co-design methodology. These workshops have helped refine the methodology to be applied in pilot sites.
Collecting opinions and experiences
Several co-design activities have been organized to collect feedback on prototype use to improve NESTORE. Participants shared their views on a prototype of tangible coach. In Italy, they also tested the wearables while Dutch and Spanish users tested the app, the chatbot and discussed the prioritization of the coaching activities.
Involving older persons
In total, the co-design activities of NESTORE involved 80 participants in the UK workshops, 21 in Italy, 31 in the Netherlands and 47 in Spain. Some of these older adults have been engaged in several rounds of discussions and will be invited to join the pilot activities.
Building on older persons' knowledge
The co-design activities permitted the identification of user's requirements. Participants stressed the importance to reflect on the cost of the coach and how data privacy and security will be assured. The coach should also provide levels of options as user's choices are critical to empower individuals.