Collection of design data from older and disabled people

If designers are to ‘design for all’, and consider the needs of older and disabled people when designing every day products and environments, data on the physical sizes and capabilities of older and disabled people, as well as able-bodied people, are needed. This paper discusses part of the work of a 3-year project, aimed at redressing some of this balance and providing a computer software tool to assist designers in considering the needs of older and disabled people. This paper briefly describes some of the methods devised and used for the collection of data, and focuses on the ethical considerations of collecting data from older and disabled people, and some of the issues that arose during the data collection.