Major research funds to DIGSUM

[2017-11-02] DIGSUM has been successful in getting funding within the JPI-MYBL Joint Transnational Call for proposals 2017 for "Ageing and Place in a Digitising World”. The programme, headed by professor Simon Lindgren, goes under the acronym of HARVEST (eHealth and Ageing in Rural Areas: Transforming Everyday Life, Digital Competences, and Technology).

The call 2017 “Ageing and place in a digitising world” is concerned with the ways in which the health and wellbeing of older people, at all stages of later life, is supported and promoted through the design of the social and physical environment, access to opportunities to learn, and the use of technologies of all kinds.

Technology is not neutral. It is used and domesticated in different ways by different people in different contexts. Age, geography, gender and so on is important. There is a risk that the care ideologies that underlie the development of eHealth services are not sensitive to such differences. The HARVEST project is particularly focused on how eHealth services are targeted to, and used by, elderly, with a particular focus on sparsely populated areas.

The project will be carried out by a DIGSUM coordinated group at Umeå University in collaboration with researchers at University of Lapland, Jyväskylä, and The Catholic University of Milan. The consortium includes sociologists, ethnologists, media researchers, educational researchers and researchers within social work. There are good opportunities to draw on much of the expertise within digital social research that exists at Umeå University.

- We will study subjective experiences, through interviews, as well as ideological dimensions, through policy analysis. In addition, we will also focus on the technology itself in the form of apps and other online services. This will give a broad and deep understanding, and we hope that the results will work as a starting point for those developing future platforms. The research itself is important from a societal perspective, but this is also an important success for DIGSUM as the project illustrates the competitiveness and large scope of digital social research at Umeå University, says Simon Lindgren.

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Page Editor: Simon Lindgren

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