The latest paper from my research group is out and will be presented at ASSETS 2017. We wanted to understand the attitudes to power-assist wheelchairs. The paper is co-authored by Dafne. You can read it here.
We interviewed 12 manual wheelchair users to understand when and where they find propelling their wheelchair difficult. We asked when they need power-assist, and how commercial products fit their needs.
We found that there is an emotional element to the need for power-assist. We also found the need for an open source do-it-yourself wheelchair propelling assistance device. This could help people in both developed and developing countries.
The paper is part of the EPSRC funded Power-Up! project which has just finished, but not before the results were captured in an innovation snapshot at the World Health Organization’s GREAT Summit (Global Research, Innovation, and Education in Assistive Technology).