Summary
This is a project in collaboration with Hong Kong PolyTech University and Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design in London. The project aimed to rethink the futures of aging, and providing suitable care for the growing population using digital innovations. 
My illustrations were used to show how people of Hong Kong would use the innovative ideas within their everyday lives, and how seamless the new program will be. I hope I captured the bright future the senior citizens will have with the new solutions. 
Skills Used 

Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator
Hand-drawn on iPad with Procreate and Adobe Draw
The Problem
Needless to say, Hong Kong has a very large population - among the most clustered cities on the planet. That means that there will be a big wave of ageing demographics that is even larger than now to strike the city - and the city is not ready to face its enormous number of elderly. 
In fact, Hong Kong is already having difficulties allocating elderly in need. They convert office spaces to care homes, where seniors are allowed a 'cubicle' to occupy their aching bodies without any protection from the harsh office lights. 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
My Role
I was responsible for researching and analysing interviews of the elderly in Hong Kong, and creating user personas for the team to drive off of. These led to user journeys, both before and after the proposed creative solutions. Then the visuals were adapted to be a part of their final show, where they were displayed as a wall installation.
Research
My first task was to follow the daily routines of our participants and make a comprehensible linear infographic on their behaviours. A total of six participants' daily lives were observed and visualised, and the design team could compare each routines at a glance. This allowed a seamless and easy segway into user personas and identified the real problem in no time. 
Research analysis 
It was soon clear that all of the elderly, regardless of being cared for or not, do not feel that they have any privacy in their lives. They feel that their lives are exposed to either caregivers or their children, who seem to 'monitor their every move.'
While it is understandable for the caregivers to watch the elderly for signs of sickness, it is not the optimal solution as the recipients feel that their freedom is being robbed out of them. 
Is there a solution to monitor the elderly's health while ensuring their privacy?
Problem
What can we do to ensure privacy and leisure in the seniors who are only allowed limited spaces?
Learning from Research
The team came up with a modular, mobile bed frame that reduces and expands according to the user's needs. This way, the user, who may be frail, is able to move his/her living space to wherever they desire - for example, closer to their friend's living space. . 
The space offers curtains to ensure privacy, storage spaces above and beside the bed to store personal goods, and has access to medical care (via built-in buttons) when the user needs.
User Journeys & Experiences
These series of illustrations were made to show how the module would be interacted with the users. The images were created based on the interviews conducted with the said elderly.
The characters in the images are caricatures of the actual participants, who are delighted to see their faces on the illustrations. This helped the participants really empathise with the images. They could really 'sense' how the module would work for them.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Further Learning
The participants were ecstatic with the illustrations and could not wait for the bed module to be implemented to their dull care home. 
In reality, however, in order for the modules to be implemented, the office building that is now operating as the care home would have to be vacated first. With some residents immobile, it is a difficult situation to tackle. The Hong Kong council is working hard to locate another place to adopt the modules so they can welcome a new generation of happy elderly residents. 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Execution
Final show
As a part of the project, the two universities held a joint show to showcase their design strategy. 
The show housed not only stakeholders but also the participants, the elderly, who are not familiar with design thinking. The show needed a bold and direct method to communicate their findings. Thus, my illustrations were used. 
Karen Jiyun Sung
All Rights Reserved 2019
Back to Top