Package openability: design for novel packaging for older people

Chavalkul, Yada (2009) Package openability: design for novel packaging for older people. Doctoral thesis, Birmingham City University.


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This study examines how novel packaging could be designed so that opening is easy for older people. Research into package openability is well established, possibly because of increases in the number of older people, whose ability to open packaging declines with ageing. However, research focusing on the design of indications that provide effective opening information for older people has not been extensive. Indications in this study were defined as packaging elements such as shapes, textures, symbols and diagrams.

This study employed mixed methods research, based on a participatory design approach. Focus groups and in-depth interviews were used to provide rich insights into older peoples' design requirements for opening indications.

Through focus groups, both qualitative and quantitative approaches were used to accurately elicit design requirements derived from participants' varied views on openability of novel packaging samples. These combined data informed the creation of design recommendations for packaging concerning sensory, cognitive and hand functions.

In-depth interviews recorded older peoples' interactions with packaging. These provided data consequently used to define the relationship between two and three dimensional indications. Design recommendations concerning the use of combined two and three dimensional indications were also developed.

All research results were synthesised to create an indication centred Design Framework Tool. This new, practical tool presents design problems and solutions associated with the different stages of package opening alongside the cognitive processes that occur at each stage. Designers can use this tool to diagnostically create novel packaging that is easy for older people to open.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
November 2009Completed
Uncontrolled Keywords: Packaging, design
Subjects: CAH25 - design, and creative and performing arts > CAH25-01 - creative arts and design > CAH25-01-03 - design studies
Divisions: Faculty of Arts, Design and Media > College of Art and Design
Doctoral Research College > Doctoral Theses Collection
Depositing User: Carrie-Anne Bryan
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2017 14:16
Last Modified: 12 Jan 2022 16:52

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