Older people face a number of issues that may impact upon their emotional or physical wellbeing, such as difficulty living independently. The number of people aged 60 and over has tripled over the last fifty years and is expected to more than triple again in the coming fifty years. Digital technology has also developed rapidly in recent years, radically changing the ways in which people approach many different tasks and activities. The aim of the OASIS project was to utilise these technological advances in order to increase the usability, quality and breadth of services available to the older population.

The project used ontologies to promote connectedness between multiple applications that could provide support to older people in the management of their lives. It was a collaboration between 33 partners and consisted of five sub-projects and 25 work packages. The domains OASIS intended to target were mobility applications, applications for use in the workplace, and independent living applications, including applications to aid socialisation.

Newcastle’s primary role in the project was to develop a participatory design method to be applied by numerous different design teams that had little experience of working with older adults. We consulted with these design teams throughout the development of two distinct methodologies, one focused on quick engagement with older people and the other focused on extended periods of time. These methodologies have now been used, modified and applied in various other projects.

Date: Jan 2008 – Dec 2011
Funding: European Commision Funded, 7th Framework Programme (Fp7) £196,032
Researchers: Patrick Olivier (PI), Phil Blythe (CI) – CEGS: School of Civil Engineering and Geosciences.                                                                                                                        Stephen Lindsay,  Amy Guo (CEGS), Yvonne Hubner (CEGS), and Simon Edwards (CEGS).
Collaborators: 33 organizations and companies from 11 countries,  2 of which are non-European.

See the OASIS project website.