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Article
Publication date: 30 October 2023

Anna Sigridur Islind, Johan Lundin, Katerina Cerna, Tomas Lindroth, Linda Åkeflo and Gunnar Steineck

Designing digital artifacts is not a linear, straightforward process. This is particularly true when applying a user-centered design approach, or co-design, with users who are…

Abstract

Purpose

Designing digital artifacts is not a linear, straightforward process. This is particularly true when applying a user-centered design approach, or co-design, with users who are unable to participate in the design process. Although the reduced participation of a particular user group may harm the end result, the literature on solving this issue is sparse. In this article, proxy design is outlined as a method for involving a user group as proxy users to speak on behalf of a group that is difficult to reach. The article investigates the following research question: How can roleplaying be embedded in co-design to engage users as proxies on behalf of those who are unable to represent themselves?

Design/methodology/approach

The article presents a design ethnography spanning three years at a cancer rehabilitation clinic, where digital artifacts were designed to be used collaboratively by nurses and patients. The empirical data were analyzed using content analysis and consisted of 20 observation days at the clinic, six proxy design workshops, 21 telephone consultations between patients and nurses, and log data from the digital artifact.

Findings

The article shows that simulated consultations, with nurses roleplaying as proxies for patients ignited and initiated the design process and enabled an efficient in-depth understanding of patients. Moreover, the article reveals how proxy design as a method further expanded the design. The study findings illustrate: (1) proxy design as a method for initiating design, (2) proxy design as an embedded element in co-design and (3) six design guidelines that should be considered when engaging in proxy design.

Originality/value

The main contribution is the conceptualization of proxy design as a method that can ignite and initiate the co-design process when important users are unreachable, vulnerable or unable to represent themselves in the co-design process. More specifically, based on the empirical findings from a design ethnography that involved nurses as proxy users speaking on behalf of patients, the article shows that roleplaying in proxy design is a fitting way of initiating the design process, outlining proxy design as an embedded element of co-design.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 September 2017

Anna Sigridur Islind and Ulrika Lundh Snis

The aim of this paper is to understand how the role of an mHealth artifact plays out in home care settings. An mHealth artifact, in terms of a mobile app, was tested to see how…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to understand how the role of an mHealth artifact plays out in home care settings. An mHealth artifact, in terms of a mobile app, was tested to see how the quality of home care work practice was enhanced and changed. The research question is: In what ways does an mHealth artifact re-shape a home care practice and how does this affect the interaction between caregivers and the elderly and learning opportunities for the caregivers?

Design/methodology/approach

An action research approach was taken and the study was conducted in a home care organization in a Swedish municipality. The data were collected through semi-structured interviews and observations that were conducted during home visits. Concepts of learning and boundary objects were used to analyze and distinguish interactions and conversations with the mHealth artifact.

Findings

The study shows how an mHealth artifact is re-shaping a home care practice and how this affects interactions and identifies learning opportunities. Views on the mHealth artifact as a designated boundary object as well as a boundary object-in-use must co-exist.

Originality/value

The study provides qualitative descriptions from using an mHealth artifact for home care, which is an emerging area of concern for both research and practice. It focuses on the interactional and organizational values generated from the actual use of the designed mobile application.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 29 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 June 2023

Steinunn Gróa Sigurðardóttir, María Óskarsdóttir, Oddur Ingimarsson and Anna Sigridur Islind

This paper aims to focus on the involvement of mental healthcare professionals in a co-design process of a digital healthcare platform. Many people with severe mental disorders…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to focus on the involvement of mental healthcare professionals in a co-design process of a digital healthcare platform. Many people with severe mental disorders need constant support and monitoring, and with long waiting lists and scarce resources in mental healthcare, there is a dire need for innovative digital solutions to counteract those issues. This paper elaborates on a co-design process of a digital platform and mobile app designed for people with mental disorders. The platform primarily considers two perspectives: i) the patients and ii) the healthcare professionals.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is based on canonical action research, where the co-design involvement with 13 healthcare professionals is analyzed and their interactions with three primary scenarios are focused.

Findings

The main contribution of this paper is three co-design principles: i) clarity and information accessibility regarding the patient's side, ii) efficiency and flexibility when it comes to the healthcare professional's side and iii) a notification function in the mobile application.

Originality/value

The theoretical contribution is the conceptualization of the three co-design principles that others can use when designing digital platforms in healthcare in general and psychiatric care in particular. The practical contributions are firstly outlined through the co-design process itself, where scenarios to guide the work are used, and secondly, the improvements made in the digital platform derived from the results of the co-design process.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 4 November 2020

Anna Sigridur Islind and Livia Norström

This paper aims to explore the future of work by investigating how work can be practiced to meet global sustainability goals. The authors draw from empirical findings from a case…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the future of work by investigating how work can be practiced to meet global sustainability goals. The authors draw from empirical findings from a case of critical design session with university students. The aim of the design session was, on the one hand, to embed sustainability into education and, on the other hand, to prepare students with necessary conceptual tools to be prepared for future work. The research questions explored are: What do students learn through engagement in critical design, and how can that foster sustainable work?

Design/methodology/approach

The research approach is a case study, drawing on critical design activities with 45 students at a university course. The data consists of students’ reflections on their design efforts and one researcher’s field notes from the design session.

Findings

The findings show that the students engaged in critical design learn different aspects of sustainable work: how to be solution oriented, how to use technology to do good in the world and outside-the-box thinking skills.

Originality/value

The authors contribute extended insight into what it means to work for sustainable development, hence doing sustainable work, and how sustainable work can be conducted in practice. The authors discuss three dimensions of sustainable work that we argue are essential to understand how professionals can work towards increased sustainability. The three dimensions are: participation-based work, practice-based work and context-based work.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 32 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 29 September 2022

Sara Willermark and Anna Sigridur Islind

This study aims to explore virtual leadership work within educational settings in the light of social disruption. In 2020, a global pandemic changed the way we work. For school…

2078

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore virtual leadership work within educational settings in the light of social disruption. In 2020, a global pandemic changed the way we work. For school leaders, that involved running a virtual school overnight. Although there is a stream of research that explores leadership in solely virtual communities, there is a gap in the literature regarding practices that transition from analog to virtual practices and the changes in leadership in those types of work practices.

Design/methodology/approach

The data gathering method constitutes a questionnaire to explore school leaders’ experiences of virtual work and virtual leadership in light of social disruption. One hundred and five Swedish school leaders answered the questionnaire covering both fixed and open questions.

Findings

The results show that school leaders’ general experiences of transition to virtual school have worked relatively well. We show how the work changes and shift the focus in the virtual workplace.

Originality/value

The author’s contributions include theorizing about leadership affordances in virtual schools and providing implications for practice. The authors summarize our main contribution in five affordances that characterize virtual leadership, including a focus on core activities, trust-based government, 1:1 communication with staff, structure and clarity and active outreach activities. The results could be interesting for understanding the radical digitalization of leadership in the digital workplace.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 35 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 January 2020

Katerina Cerna, Alexandra Weilenmann, Jonas Ivarsson, Hans Rysedt, Anna Sigridur Islind, Johan Lundin and Gunnar Steineck

The purpose of this study is to understand the activities in nurses’ work practices in relation to the design process of a self-monitoring application.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to understand the activities in nurses’ work practices in relation to the design process of a self-monitoring application.

Design/methodology/approach

A design ethnographic approach was applied in this study.

Findings

To solve the problem of translating highly qualitative phenomena, such as pain, into the particular abstract features of a self-monitoring application, design participants had to balance these two aspects by managing complexity. In turn, the nurses’ work practices have changed because it now involves a new activity based on a different logic than the nurses’ traditional work practices.

Originality/value

This study describes a new activity included in nurses’ work practices when the nurses became part of a design process. This study introduces a novel way on how to gain a deeper understanding of existing professional practice through a detailed study of activities taking place in a design process. This study explores the possible implications for nurses’ professional practices when they participate in a self-monitoring application design process.

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