Increasing gender sensitivity with codesign
Keywords:empathy, undergraduate designers, journey mapping, hexagon spindle model of ergonomics, sustainability, concept design, smart mobility.
The Horizon Europe 2020 TInnGO (Transport Innovation Gender Observatory) project1 aimed to facilitate and empower the inclusion of underrepresented and diverse groups in smart mobility. Women are still considered to be an underrepresented group across the transport sector, forming less than 30% of all employees in the sector. Significantly women’s travel needs are not met by current transport provision, despite widespread evidence that they make different types of journeys and have different mobility concerns. It may hypothesised that even less is known about other minority groups (such as those from the BAME (Black, Asian, Minority and Ethnic community and those with disabilities). The design of future transport services and products is further skewed by the predominance of male undergraduate transport designers and engineers. While there are many noteworthy attempts to attract young women into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) careers and provide support for them in the male dominated sector, the work conducted by TInnGO’s Coventry team focussed on developing gender and diversity sensitive smart mobility solutions to highlight everyday mobility issues for women. These have been termed ‘Design provocations,’ 50 such designs were produced over 18 months in conjunction with 4 undergraduate design interns and are available for comment on our Open Innovation Platform2. From this experience, the team have produced a series of design tools to facilitate undergraduate student’s empathy and awareness when designing gender and diversity sensitive smart mobility products.
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