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Diversity and inclusivity in the age of wearables: A buzzword, a myth, an uncertain reality

Diversity and inclusivity in the age of wearables: A buzzword, a myth, an uncertain reality

Maragiannis, Anastasios ORCID: 0000-0002-1662-0189 and Ashford, Rain (2019) Diversity and inclusivity in the age of wearables: A buzzword, a myth, an uncertain reality. Body, Space & Technology, 18 (1). pp. 198-214. ISSN 1470-9120 (Online) (doi:

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‘Wearable Technology’ is a buzzword of our contemporary era. It could be argued there are few examples of aesthetically pleasing devices that are designed to meet our needs and/or our consumer desires. However, do we focus on design and aesthetics of technology as a holistic action with the capacity to simultaneously engage conceptual and practical shifts that make our society a place with no boundaries? To design inclusively is to engage the user deeply throughout the design process, sharing our practices and amalgamating people’s unique knowledge as technological interventions. Design diversity and inclusion seems to be used interchangeably with two other terminologies, a) Universal Design and b) Design for All. The terms have a parallel purpose but their origin and use is distinguished in various parts of the world. For example, Inclusive Design is used within Europe and goes beyond age, ethnicity, gender, sex, and disabilities to focus on other excluded groups to deliver mainstream solutions. Inspired by the limited understanding and choices around aesthetics and personalisation in wearables, this article discusses how we use technology to empower individuals in a variety of contexts; to improve our way of living in the world, through a number of contextual resources and practice-research, which were devised and conducted to address women’s concerns and preferences on wearable technologies.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (unless stated otherwise) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Copyright is retained by the author(s).
Uncontrolled Keywords: Wearables, design, technology, gender, diversity, inclusivity
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > School of Design (DES)
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > Digital Arts, Research & Enterprise (DARE)
Last Modified: 01 May 2020 12:26

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