Requirements and Design Principles for co-design workshops involving people with a visual impairment


Bard Wartena, NHL-Stenden University of applied sciences & University of Technology Delft

Job van t’ Veer, NHL-Stenden University of applied sciences

Christiaan Pinkster, Koninklijke Visio


Co-design workshops can be used to involve people with visual impairments in the design process of assistive technology. These workshops bring together designers, researchers, and people with visual disabilities to develop and refine design concepts collaboratively. However, when designing with people with visual disabilities, it is important to use methods that take into account their specific needs and capabilities. Most design methods rely heavily on creative cooperation through visual affordances; this makes using them in co-design with people with visual disabilities a challenge. The project “Inclusive Innovation” focuses on finding requirements and design principles necessary to facilitate inclusive co-design through design methods.

The educational session will focus on sharing and distributing the knowledge gained during the project. Through a multitude of practices with different formats of co-design methods and workshops, design requirements and principles where found. With these project managers, educators and other professionals that work with people with visual impairments, can prepare and develop their own workshops project. During the session the first part will be a presentation on the requirements and design principles and how they were gathered. The second part will be on how to apply them in their own practices through a short workshop-format supported by a Canvas.

Expected learning outcomes

At the end of the session the participants will be able to recognize and apply:

1. Requirements and Design Principles for co-design workshops involving blind people with visual disabilities.

2. The importance of individual needs and universal design principles in the design process of Assistive Technology for people with visual impairments.

3. How to ensure design methods and workshop materials are accessible for individuals with visual impairments.

4. How to facilitate a shared mental model between participants through sensitizers and reflexivity by the facilitator.