To read this content please select one of the options below:

Assistive technology for people with PIMD in challenging scenarios

Meike Engelhardt (Department of Special Education, Heidelberg University of Education, Heidelberg, Germany)
Michał Kosiedowski (Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center, Poznan, Poland)
Irena Duszyńska (Stowarzyszenie Na Tak, Poznan, Poland)

Journal of Enabling Technologies

ISSN: 2398-6263

Article publication date: 12 May 2020

Issue publication date: 21 July 2020




The purpose of this study is to examine in what type of scenarios of daily life assistive technology such as the INSENSION system would provide considerable benefit for people with profound intellectual and multiple disabilities (PIMD).


A series of focus group workshops were held with relatives of people with PIMD and direct support professionals (DSPs), as well as experts in information and communications technology (ICT). They were oriented towards the design thinking approach and moderated as per the Disney method.


The participants identified transitions from known to unknown caregivers, provision of care during the night and the impact of external factors on a person’s mood as challenging situations within the PIMD context.

Practical implications

Solving these problems would lead to considerable benefits to the affected people. Based on the ideas gathered in workshops, three technological applications for the INSENSION system were derived, i.e. communication application, multimedia player and smart room devices, all of which will provide remedies in specific usage scenarios.


Methods drawing on the participant’s creativity in combination with the workshops’ multi-perspectivity facilitated a direct reference to the daily life of the target group. In this manner, the innovative ICT system INSENSION can be oriented towards the requirements of this vulnerable group.



The research presented herewith has been conducted within the INSENSION project that received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement no. 780819.


Engelhardt, M., Kosiedowski, M. and Duszyńska, I. (2020), "Assistive technology for people with PIMD in challenging scenarios", Journal of Enabling Technologies, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 87-97.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles