Morton Kesten Universal Design Competition

We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 Morton Kesten Universal Design Competition!

The annual Morton Kesten Universal Design Competition is held to recognize students across the United States for innovative designs using the principles of Universal Design that support aging-in-place in one of two areas:

  1. Space: to reconceptualize an existing kitchen/bath space or create a brand new kitchen/bath space, or
  2. Product: develop a product/prototype that embraces and utilizes the ideas and principles of Universal Design for use at home.

The Competition is in association with the Morton Kesten Summit, which is held every two years and features the latest developments in aging-in-place efforts by organizations and professionals from across the country.

Click here for the full story.

The 2018 winners include:

1st Place Winner
esa
By Emma Mantell
Kean University, NJ, Industrial Design Program

A home’s front door should feel welcoming and safe, and yet for many older adults, struggling with keys, the keyhole, and the doorknob are common issues faced on a daily basis. esa seeks to redefine the way we interact with the front door. The 3-product ecosystem includes an innovative new take on the lock, keyring, and handle. esa is designed as a versatile front door solution, featuring Bluetooth, as well as the conventional key lock, integrating the modern with the familiar.

2nd Place Winner 
The Cinch Hamper
By Emily Siira
Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design, WI, Industrial Design Program

The Cinch hamper simplifies the laundry process for all individuals, especially those with limited mobility (e.g., aging, disability, health challenges, injuries). Storage, transportation, folding, and hanging laundry are physically strenuous tasks due to required lifting, bending, and range-of-motion. The Cinch hamper employs mechanical advantage to do the lifting and transport of clothing for the user, while providing a simplified system for clothes hanging. Clothing remains at waist height for unloading to/from washer; wheeled transport with storage eliminates need for laundry baskets.

3rd Place Winner (tie)
Recolo
By Arlenis Roberts
Kean University, NJ, Industrial Design Program

Recolo is an alert system that organizes medication times and doses, and sends medication reminder alerts to each device paired to the tablet display through LED lights. It includes a tablet with magnetic sides that house accompanying pill bottles and a silicone-skinned wearable “notifier” with Bluetooth connection to the tablet. The notifier vibrates and emits a light that corresponds to the color of the medication bottle when sending a reminder. The tablet home screen offers the options: medications, contact a specialist, adjust settings, and view health data collected by the mobile Recolo app.

3rd Place Winner (tie)
Petal
By Quinn Edgecombe
University of Houston, TX, Industrial Design

Along with the physical impact, the loss of an extremity due to trauma can affect self-sufficiency. Petal’s goal is to empower unilateral upper limb amputees to confidently maintain their nail hygiene with the use of one hand. This design for the extreme user can support a diverse population of users, improving human performance, health, wellness, and social involvement. Stick gel pad technology allows Petal to be used on any surface and ensures stability when clipping nails. The wide, silicone textured, petal-shaped handle allows the user to easily press down to trim their nail.

Honorable Mention
FridgiPrep
By Mariah Zambuto
Columbus College of Art and Design, OH, Industrial Design

People who are experiencing memory loss can develop disordered eating habits, and often do not get the proper nutrition they need. They may forget how to make balanced meals or cook altogether. Taking inspiration from pill organizers and the booming grocery delivery and meal kit markets, FridgiPrep addresses this issue with drawers that are divided into compartments corresponding with meals to be eaten per day. It beeps when it is time to eat, and LED lights glow to indicate which section contains the meal to be eaten. FridgiPrep was designed to be installed into existing refrigerator drawers.

Honorable Mention
Elevate: Transitional Walker
By Solomon Malone
Kean University, NJ, Industrial Design Program

Elevate is a walker that assists older adults with mobility, lifting, and carrying heavy objects in the home (e.g., packages, groceries) and around town (e.g., shopping bags, laundry) without assistance. The lifting feature uses a hydraulic mechanism that is operated with a foot pedal. The handles can swivel out ninety degrees for varied carrying positions, hooks can accommodate extra bags, and a three-wheel system enables heavy lifting upstairs with less effort. The compact design helps it easily fit in the trunk of a car and squeeze onto crowded subway cars or buses.

Honorable Mention
WCY Aisle Wheelchair
By Puyi Liu
California State University Long Beach, CA

The WCY Wheelchair aims to address the challenge of transferring an individual from a wheelchair to a seat on the plane. The WCY includes a sliding seat that acts as a bridge or transfer board. Passengers do not have to leave the support seat during the transfer process, thus eliminating the need to be lifted up. This solution saves airport staff persons’ energy, and offers a better experience for the passenger. The wheelchair can be folded and carried as a suitcase while traveling. Its narrow width and foldable design bring benefits to a variety of environments beyond the airport.

Thank you to everyone who submitted entries to this year!

What is Universal Design?

USC’s annual Morton Kesten Universal Design Competition has utilized the pioneering Center for Universal Design’s internationally referenced Principles of Universal Design to guide the submission process. This year, the Competition is including a second definition and set of goals developed by the Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access to broaden the scope for applicants to consider as part of their design development process and submission.

Center for Universal Design, NCSU Definition

In 1997, the Center for Universal Design, North Carolina State University convened a group of advocates of universal design who developed and compiled The Principles of Universal Design©, which have been widely cited since that time.

Definition: “The design of products and environments to be USABLE by ALL people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.” The 7 Principles of Universal Design can be found in the Universal Design tab below or at: http://www.ncsu.edu/ncsu/design/cud/about_ud/udprinciples.htm

Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA) Center Definition

In 2005, the IDeA Center, University at Buffalo, launched an initiative to develop an updated conceptual framework for Universal Design that expands the focus to social participation and health, and links universal design to research.

Definition: “A design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation.” The definition and goals can be found in the Universal Design tab below or at: http://udeworld.com/goalsofud.html

Why Universal Design?

Homes that have supportive, comfortable and convenient features and products help to ensure that all residents can remain in their homes across the life span and with varying abilities. Yet, most homes present barriers to living independently, lack supportive features that could make daily activities easier, and have safety hazards that could lead to avoidable accidents such as falls. The majority of homes were not built with people of all ages, sizes, and abilities in mind. Universal design features and products play a critical role in the ability of all individuals to conduct their daily activities, age in their homes, and avoid institutional settings. Increasingly, professionals are creating designs and products that support all ages and stages of life.

Cash Awards

  • 1st Prize= $2,000
  • 2nd Prize = $1,500
  • 3rd Prize = $1,000

Online Recognition

Award recipients will also be featured on the following websites: gero.usc.eduwww.stopfalls.org, and www.homemods.org

 Click the tabs below to learn more!

Eligibility

Eligibility

  1. Current United States resident students and online students in any state enrolled in a degree granting 2 to 5 year undergraduate or graduate program in the United States.
  2. Multi-disciplinary teams are strongly encouraged to apply, with a maximum of six (6) members.
  3. Applicants should be willing to sign a media consent form to be recorded and photographed.

Judging Criteria and Judges

Judging Criteria

Submissions will be judged on how well they achieve the following:

  1. Reflect research into the existing market and the design fills a gap in that market
  2. Demonstrate innovative insights by engaging user/experts* in the design process and/or final design* = “user/experts” are people with functional differences that vary from the norm who experience every day how design fails and who can help to provide guidance on solutions (Ostroff, 1997)
  3. Integrate esthetic appeal with function
  4. Address anticipated feasibility and cost-effectiveness in replication or fabrication
  5. Incorporate attention to environmental sustainability in materials and production
  6. Showcase CUD’s Universal Design Principles (equitable use, flexibility in use, simple and intuitive, perceptible information, tolerance for error, low physical effort, size and space for approach and use) OR IDeA’s Universal Design Goals (body fit, comfort, awareness, understanding, wellness, social integration, personalization, and cultural appropriateness)
  7. Describe how the design supports the user(s)’ ability to age in place

2018 Judges

Mary Lou Dauray, CID
Environmental Artist

Mary Lou Dauray, through her art, raises awareness about climate destruction and social injustices. As an artist who is highly proficient in many mediums, she has the ability to communicate powerful messages while also creating paintings of extraordinary beauty. Her work has focused on the war in Iraq, feelings generated after visiting holocaust sites in Eastern Europe, gender inequality, and the topic of global warming. After completing a series relating to the mining, transporting and burning of coal in 2015, Mary Lou turned her attention to the alarming situation of increasing radioactivity due to worldwide nuclear energy policies. She started this series with artwork reflecting the serious consequences of the Fukushima Daiichi triple nuclear meltdown in Japan.

Mary Lou Dauray’s artwork is in numerous collections around the globe including the Sophie Davis Medical School, City College of New York, and many private collections. Her exhibitions throughout the U.S. include those at the Virginia Art Museum, the Blue Planet juried show sponsored by The Pacific Coast Region of Women’s Caucus for Art, Gallery 111 juried exhibition in Sausalito, CA, and Runnymede Corporate Headquarters, Virginia. Learn more at: https://www.maryloudauray.com/

Susan Duncan, RN, Designer
Founder and Principal, The ABCs of Accessibility; Instructor, University of Southern California Leonard Davis School of Gerontology Executive Certificate in Home Modification Program

With more than thirty-five years of hands-on consulting experience in virtually all facets of inclusive design and construction, Susan Duncan is the founder and principal of The ABCs of Accessibility® Inc., established in 1978, dedicated to providing universal and accessible design consulting services to support the unique goals and needs of residential, public, and private sector clients. She is an instructor for the National Resource Center on Supportive Housing and Home Modification at USC, where she has taught Course 2, Home Modifications: How to Get it Done and Home Modifications and Ethics: Do the Right Thing!

Ms. Duncan combined her depth of experiences as a Registered Nurse and designer to assist thousands of individuals build and modify homes to meet the overarching goals of creating options, independence and improving quality of life. She is an experienced project manager who can both evaluate and advise public and private sectors on a broad range of compliance issues, including physical barriers in buildings and sites. Projects have ranged from new hotels, multi-family housing projects, to modified and custom homes spanning the globe.

Jordana Maisel, PhD
Director of Research Activities, Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access, University at Buffalo, NY; Adjunct Assistant Professor in the School of Architecture and Urban and Regional Planning, University at Buffalo

Jordana Maisel, PhD, is the Director of Research Activities at the Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA), located at the University at Buffalo. She also serves as a Co-Director of the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Universal Design in the Built Environment (RERC-UD) and Director of the Training activities of the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Accessible Public Transportation (RERC-APT). Dr. Maisel is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the School of Architecture and Urban and Regional Planning at UB. She holds a PhD in Industrial Engineering/Human Factors at the University at Buffalo, a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University at Buffalo, and a BS in Human Development from Cornell University.

Dr. Maisel’s primary interest includes creating a built environment that improves public health. Her current research includes projects on the effectiveness of universal design, policy and planning issues related to inclusive housing design strategies and streetscape design, and evidence based guidelines for universal design. She is the co-author of Universal Design: Creating Inclusive Environments (Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2012). Dr. Maisel also has professional experience with facility planning and project management in New York City.

Jon Pynoos, PhD
University of Southern California Leonard Davis School of Gerontology, Los Angeles, CA

Jon Pynoos, PhD, is the UPS Foundation Professor of Gerontology, Policy and Planning at the Leonard Davis School of Gerontology of the University of Southern California. He is also Director of the National Resource Center on Supportive Housing and Home Modification and Co-Director of the Fall Prevention Center of Excellence. Pynoos has spent his career researching, writing, and advising the government and non-profit sectors concerning how to improve housing and long term care for the elderly. He has conducted a large number of applied research projects based on surveys and case studies of housing, aging in place and long-term care. He teaches courses on Social Policy and Aging.

Pynoos has been awarded both Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellowships. Before moving to USC in 1979, Pynoos was Director of an Area Agency on Aging/Home Care Corporation in Massachusetts that provided a range of services to keep older persons out of institutional settings. He holds undergraduate, Master’s and PhD degrees from Harvard University where he graduated Magna cum Laude.

Intellectual Property

Any intellectual property developed by an individual or team (participant) as part of their participation in the USC Universal Design Competition will remain the property of the participant(s), or participant(s)’ universities or employers, as applicable. The University of Southern California (USC) Davis School of Gerontology reserves the right to publicize designs following submission in print and online media including but not limited to: posters, newsletters, websites, and social media. Participants interested in intellectual property protection should take any steps necessary to protect patentable inventions, copyrighted work, or other intellectual property prior to submission. This may include the exclusion of patentable details in applicants’ submissions. The USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology will not be held responsible for any use of participants’ submission content by any third party once it is publicized.

Universal Design Principles and Goals

Universal Design Principles and Goals

Center for Universal Design, North Carolina State University – Universal Design Definition, Principles, and Guidelines

Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA), University at Buffalo, NY – Universal Design Definition and Goals

 


 

Center for Universal Design, North Carolina State University – Universal Design Definition, Principles, and Guidelines

Definition: Architect Ron Mace defined Universal Design as “The design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.”

The authors, a working group of architects, product designers, engineers and environmental design researchers, collaborated to establish the following Principles of Universal Design to guide a wide range of design disciplines including environments, products, and communications. These seven principles may be applied to evaluate existing designs, guide the design process and educate both designers and consumers about the characteristics of more usable products and environments.

The Principles of Universal Design are presented here, in the following format: name of the principle, intended to be a concise and easily remembered statement of the key concept embodied in the principle; definition of the principle, a brief description of the principle’s primary directive for design; and guidelines, a list of the key elements that should be present in a design which adheres to the principle. (Note: all guidelines may not be relevant to all designs.)

PRINCIPLE ONE: Equitable Use

The design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities.

Guidelines:

1a. Provide the same means of use for all users: identical whenever possible; equivalent when not.
1b. Avoid segregating or stigmatizing any users.
1c. Provisions for privacy, security, and safety should be equally available to all users.
1d. Make the design appealing to all users.

PRINCIPLE TWO: Flexibility in Use

The design accommodates a wide range of individual preferences and abilities.

Guidelines:

2a. Provide choice in methods of use.
2b. Accommodate right- or left-handed access and use.
2c. Facilitate the user’s accuracy and precision.
2d. Provide adaptability to the user’s pace.

PRINCIPLE THREE: Simple and Intuitive Use

Use of the design is easy to understand, regardless of the user’s experience, knowledge, language skills, or current concentration level.

Guidelines:

3a. Eliminate unnecessary complexity.
3b. Be consistent with user expectations and intuition.
3c. Accommodate a wide range of literacy and language skills.
3d. Arrange information consistent with its importance.
3e. Provide effective prompting and feedback during and after task completion.

PRINCIPLE FOUR: Perceptible Information

The design communicates necessary information effectively to the user, regardless of ambient conditions or the user’s sensory abilities.

Guidelines:

4a. Use different modes (pictorial, verbal, tactile) for redundant presentation of essential information.
4b. Provide adequate contrast between essential information and its surroundings.
4c. Maximize “legibility” of essential information.
4d. Differentiate elements in ways that can be described (i.e., make it easy to give instructions or directions).
4e. Provide compatibility with a variety of techniques or devices used by people with sensory limitations.

PRINCIPLE FIVE: Tolerance for Error

The design minimizes hazards and the adverse consequences of accidental or unintended actions.

Guidelines:

5a. Arrange elements to minimize hazards and errors: most used elements, most accessible; hazardous elements eliminated, isolated, or shielded.
5b. Provide warnings of hazards and errors.
5c. Provide fail safe features.
5d. Discourage unconscious action in tasks that require vigilance.

PRINCIPLE SIX: Low Physical Effort

The design can be used efficiently and comfortably and with a minimum of fatigue.

Guidelines:

6a. Allow user to maintain a neutral body position.
6b. Use reasonable operating forces.
6c. Minimize repetitive actions.
6d. Minimize sustained physical effort.

PRINCIPLE SEVEN: Size and Space for Approach and Use

Appropriate size and space is provided for approach, reach, manipulation, and use regardless of user’s body size, posture, or mobility.

Guidelines:

7a. Provide a clear line of sight to important elements for any seated or standing user.
7b. Make reach to all components comfortable for any seated or standing user.
7c. Accommodate variations in hand and grip size.
7d. Provide adequate space for the use of assistive devices or personal assistance.

Please note that the Principles of Universal Design address only universally usable design, while the practice of design involves more than consideration for usability. Designers must also incorporate other considerations such as economic, engineering, cultural, gender, and environmental concerns in their design processes. These Principles offer designers guidance to better integrate features that meet the needs of as many users as possible.

Copyright 1997 NC State UniversityThe Center for Universal Design


Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA), University at Buffalo, NY – Universal Design Definition and Goals

Definition: Universal design “a design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation” (Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012).

Goals of Universal Design

The IDeA Center developed a new conceptual framework for universal design that expands the original usability focus to social participation and health and acknowledges the role of context in developing realistic applications. Complementing the Principles of UD (NCSU, 1997), the Goals of Universal Design© define the outcomes of UD practice in ways that can be measured and applied to all design domains within the constraints of existing resources. In addition, they encompass functional, social, and emotional dimensions. Moreover, each goal is supported by an interdisciplinary knowledge base (e.g., anthropometrics, biomechanics, perception, cognition, safety, health promotion, social interaction). Thus, the Goals can be used effectively as a framework for both knowledge discovery and knowledge translation for practice. Moreover, the Goals can help to tie policy embodied in disability rights laws to UD and provide a basis for improving regulatory activities by the adoption of an outcomes-based approach.

Visit udeworld.com/goalsofud.html for visual and descriptive real-world examples of each Goal.

Body Fit

Accommodating a wide a range of body sizes and abilities

Comfort

Keeping demands within desirable limits of body function and perceptio

Awareness

Ensuring that critical information for use is easily perceived

Understanding

Making methods of operation and use intuitive, clear and unambiguous

Wellness

Contributing to health promotion, avoidance of disease and protection from hazards

Social Integration

Treating all groups with dignity and respect

Personalization

Incorporating opportunities for choice and the expression of individual preferences

Cultural Appropriateness

Respecting and reinforcing cultural values, and the social and environmental contexts of any design project

 

If you would like to reference the Goals of Universal Design, please credit “Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012”


Aging in Place

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Background

Homes that have supportive, comfortable, and convenient features and products help to ensure that all residents can remain in their homes across the life span and with varying abilities. Yet, most homes present barriers to living independently, lack supportive features that could make daily activities easier, and have safety hazards that could lead to avoidable accidents such as falls. The majority of homes were not built with people of all ages, sizes, and abilities in mind. Universal design and visitability features and products play a critical role in the ability of all individuals to conduct their daily activities, age in their homes, and avoid institutional settings. Increasingly, professionals are creating designs and products that support all ages and stages of life.

To learn more about Universal Design, visit the Center for Universal Design here and the Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access here.

To learn more about Visitability, go to the Concrete Change website, here.

To learn more about how people’s needs change as they age and how this relates to housing, read on below.

Click here to read a blog from the New York Times that highlights older adults’ experiences, needs, and concerns related to aging in place.

Click here to read how growing numbers of older adults are embracing technology.

Click here to read a report from the Department of Housing and Urban Development on Aging in Place and initiatives to improve living accommodations for the aging.

Click here for the Bipartisan Policy Center’s report on the links between housing and healthy aging.

Questions? Email mksummit@usc.edu or call 213.740.1364

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