If you are not entirely sure what designing for diversity means, there are ten people ready to help get you started. Their stories are on a website hosted by the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Designing with People.org. Ten people were selected under five categories – vision, hearing, mobility, dexterity and cognition – to represent a spectrum of capability across the UK population. Each person filled out two questionnaires. One was about capability and the other about lifestyle. While these ten stories cannot replace full user consultation, they can give an excellent insight into the issues each one faces on a daily basis.
Clicking on the first person in the list we find that Pandora has macular degeneration. She lists what she can do and what she cannot do. This is followed by her occupation, a typical day, how designs improve her life, lessons for designers and the five most important things in her life. Her key message for designers is, “If I was approached by a designer and asked which areas of my life could be improved, I would hope that the designer would listen to me but not design for a specific group as if it’s somehow our fault”. The other nine follow the same format. An excellent resource.
This project and website was developed jointly by the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Engineering Design Centre, The Well-being Institute, and Loughborough Design School.