Transform Ageing is a design-led programme to improve people’s experience of ageing.

It brings together people in later life, social entrepreneurs and public sector leaders, to design and deliver solutions to the needs and aspirations of our ageing communities.

In Phase 1, design workshops were held in Cornwall, North Devon, Somerset and Torbay over the Summer 2017. Participants worked together to explore a specific challenge and conduct research in their communities. Their findings informed a set of ‘innovation briefs’ for social entrepreneurs to respond to in Phase 2.

We commissioned an ethnographic team (Postcode Films and Fan Sissoko) to follow the experience of one group in Somerset, working on the challenge ‘preventing mental and physical ill health’.

What did we learn?

  • The group lacked common ground at the start and needed to spend time navigating their different perspectives. As a result, they initially felt frustrated that they weren’t progressing more quickly
  • Conducting community research helped the group to come together, as they were talking ‘on behalf’ of the people they had interviewed. In addition, the group overcame differing perspectives on the value of community research
  • Other groups in Somerset also tried hard to empathise with the issues faced by people in later life, for example directly experiencing mobility issues by spending time in a wheelchair
  • As in other areas, there was a strong sense of ownership over their work 

How can I find out more?

For an in-depth look at the stories from each location, see our other ethnographic videos and report.

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