Innovating for ‘active ageing’ in a public–private innovation partnership: Creating doable problems and alignment

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By focusing on different constructions of the elderly and how these definitions are aligned within a Danish public–private innovation partnership called No Age, the article examines how various understandings of ‘the elderly’, ‘active ageing’ and ‘health’ clash and entangle in innovation work. The ambition of No Age is to create welfare technologies for elderly people. The authors were invited to contribute ethnographic insights to the partnership. We argue that the No Age's innovation process creates doable problems by co-producing technological solutions, their users and the health issues the products are designed to address. Furthermore, we argue that the specific constellation and alignment of actors in such a partnership define how and what kinds of users are constituted, as the target groups and success criteria for the development of welfare technologies are shaped throughout the innovation process rather than decided at the beginning. This has implications for the role of ethnographers as providers of user-insights in health-related innovation projects.
Original languageEnglish
JournalTechnological Forecasting and Social Change
Pages (from-to)10-18
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2015

ID: 98148701