Smart Kitchens for People with Cognitive Impairments: A Qualitative Study of Design Requirements


Individuals with cognitive impairments currently leverage extensive human resources during their transitions from assisted living to independent living. In Western Europe, many government-supported volunteer organizations provide sheltered living facilities; supervised environments in which people with cognitive impairments collaboratively learn daily living skills. In this paper, we describe communal cooking practices in sheltered living facilities and identify opportunities for supporting these with interactive technology to reduce volunteer workload. We conducted two contextual observations of twelve people with cognitive impairments cooking in sheltered living facilities and supplemented this data through interviews with four employees and volunteers who supervise them. Through thematic analysis, we identified four themes to inform design requirements for communal cooking activities: Work organization, community, supervision, and practicalities. Based on these, we present five design implications for assistive systems in kitchens for people with cognitive deficiencies

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This paper was published in IUPUIScholarWorks.

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