Strength-based co-design that EMPOWERs: Lessons from codesigning with older adults

Bernardo Figueiredo, Torgeir Aleti, Diane M. Martin, Mike Reid, Jacob Sheahan, Larissa Hjorth

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Purpose – This study aims to address the existing gap in co-design frameworks by introducing the EMPOWER framework, a strength-based co-design
methodological approach specifically designed to tackle the key empowerment challenges associated with co-designing alongside individuals experiencing vulnerability. The purpose of this study is to provide a set of easy-to-remember empowering guidelines to enhance the co-design process.
Design/methodology/approach – EMPOWER is based on lessons from the field, through five years of working with older adults.
Findings – The framework includes seven guidelines to overcome common challenges in co-design research. The acronym EMPOWER refers to
guidelines for extending, multiplying, publicising, outsourcing, widening, enabling and reflecting on co-design research.
Research limitations/implications – Although extendable to other experiences of vulnerability, the examples provided focus on the experiences of ageing consumers.
Practical implications – EMPOWER has direct relevance to practitioners wishing not only to work with consumers experiencing vulnerabilities but also to empower these consumers through purposeful research actions.
Social implications – Although drawing on co-design research with older adults, these guidelines can be applied to empower other groups experiencing vulnerability.
Originality/value – There is a relative lack of guidelines on how to strengthen the co-design process in a way that empowers consumers experiencing
vulnerability. To address this, this paper offers a framework and some grounded examples contributing to the current knowledge of co-design in marketing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1105-1112
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Services Marketing
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 13 Oct 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • qualitative research
  • co-design
  • customer participation
  • transformative
  • technology and service


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