D4H2015 Highlights and Gallery

D4H2015 Highlights and Gallery
July 2015 saw the third European Design4Health conference at Sheffield Hallam University. Building on the success of our previous conferences in 2011 and 2013, this was our biggest event yet. Our purpose was to create an environment focused on creative practices that enables healthcare innovation, that challenges people to think differently and that facilitates real participation between public, patients, health professionals, researchers and businesses.

Photo: Nigel Barker Photography


Design4Health conference has become a key date in the calendar for creative practitioners, health professionals and researchers working in health and wellbeing contexts across the world. Design4Health2015 ran over four days with a 24Hr Inclusive Design Challenge, Posters and a peer reviewed exhibition running alongside the conference.

See these perspectives from some of the participants at last July’s conference in Sheffield and see below for a short summary.

We hope to see you at our next events! © 2015 Lab4Living Sheffield Hallam University All Rights Reserved.



Delegates were welcomed on Monday 13th July by our Headline Sponsor, Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network (YH AHSN) before a keynote address by Dr Lucy Lyons.

Work by Dr Lucy Lyons

This year’s 24Hr Inclusive Design Challenge focussed on the impact of living (and caring for someone) with Parkinson’s Disease and was launched by Professor Julia Cassim of Kyoto Design Lab. Teams were set their brief and given 24 hours to work on ideas and concepts.

Design Challenge. Photo: Nigel Barker Photography

24Hr Design Challenge

An evening drinks reception to welcome guests and delegates was hosted on Monday evening by medical products manufacturer B Braun. The event also marked the launch of the Design4Health exhibition in Sheffield Institute of Arts Gallery.

Data Objects at Design4Health2015

Data Objects at Design4Health2015

D4H exhibition

Visitors at the Design4Health exhibition

A packed programme of breakout sessions and keynote presentations continued on Tuesday 14th July whilst the Design Challenge teams worked through Monday night on their brief. During Tuesday afternoon a judging panel was convened to consider the teams’ finished concepts.

Design Challenge

Design Challenge participants testing ideas

Design Challenge team

One of the Design Challenge teams


This short film by 京都工芸繊維大学 KYOTO Design Lab describes the 24 Hour Inclusive Design Challenge —24時間インクルーシブデザインチャレンジDesign4HealthカンファレンスLab4Living、シェフィールド・ハラム大学© 2016 Kyoto Institute of Technology All Rights Reserved. Posted by  on 10/02/2016

Over the course of the conference, 70 individual peer-reviewed papers were presented, including our first presentation by Skype from a researcher in Thailand. We welcomed six diverse keynote speakers, including Professor Brendan McCormack,

Brendan McCormack

Professor Brendan McCormack


Professor Gail Mountain, Professor Rachel Cooper and Mat Hunter (UK Design Council).

Rachel Cooper

Rachel Cooper discussed the role of design and research in the context of Health and the City

Running alongside the structured programme of presentations, delegates were able to take part in less formal activities. We provided an open social space for reflection, relaxation and conversation.

The Yarn Lounge encouraged delegates to enjoy the positive effects that knitting and crochet can have on wellbeing by learning something new, as well as contributing to some PhD research by Alison Mayne into wellbeing in women.

The Yarn Lounge

The Yarn Lounge. Crochet activities with Alison Mayne. Photo: Nigel Barker Photography

A live performance artwork devised by Becky Shaw explored the purpose, practice and ethics of therapeutic activities for people with dementia.

‘Reading ‘A’‘ devised by Becky Shaw, performed by Becky Shaw, Claire Lee, Kate Moore, Ellen Kirby, Claire Mayne and Laura Cox.

This year, we introduced Poster presentations; throughout the conference, delegates had the opportunity to view a diverse collection of peer-reviewed Posters in Cantor Building foyer.  There were scheduled opportunities for poster presenters and those exhibiting in the exhibition to discuss their work informally with delegates.


Posters Display at Design4Health2015

On Tuesday evening, the Design Challenge teams presented their ideas to conference delegates and voting took place for the People’s Choice award, sponsored by Devices4Dignity. The Judges’ Award was sponsored and presented by JRI Orthopaedics Ltd at a drinks reception in Cantor Building.


Pulse Pal

Pulse Pal, winner of the People’s Choice Award, and now in development



SlowGo, winner of the Judges Award

On Wednesday evening delegates were invited on a ‘Sheffield Walkabout’, taking in some of Sheffield’s history on a walking tour through the city leading to Kelham Island Industrial museum for the conference dinner.

Design4Health2015 participants on a Sheffield Walkabout

Clare Craig and Dan Wolstenholme lead Design4Health2015 participants on a Sheffield ‘Walkabout’

Dinner guests were treated to a taste of Sheffield’s industrial heritage with the running of the mighty River Don Engine plus after dinner music from Old Silkstone Brass Band.

Thursday morning put the delegates firmly in the driver’s seat and kicked off with an Open Space discussion, where delegates were invited to lead the debate, and suggest topics for discussion, collaboration and possible future research opportunities.

Open Space discussion

Open space discussion and feedback at Design4Health2015

Open Space feedback

Open space feedback at Design4Health2015

At a LEGO Serious Play workshop, delivered by ADRC researcher Matt Dexter, delegates experienced how a creative methodology for approaching open –ended questions can be explored through LEGO.


The final session included a wrap-up discussion and Q&A and prize giving. The award for Best Paper Presentation went to Peta Bush for her paper on The Craft of Wearable Wellbeing. The Design4Heath Exhibition 2015 Award for best exhibit went to David Swann and the Ebola Bleach Gauge.

Ebola Bleach Gauge by David Swann

Ebola Bleach Gauge by David Swann, winner of Design4Health2015 Best Exhibit

Read more about Design4Health2015






Our Headline Sponsor for D4H15 was Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network.

The Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network is one of 15 regional innovative networks given licence to operate by NHS England in 2013.  Our purpose is to connect academia, NHS, research and industry to accelerate the process of innovation and facilitate the adoption and spread of innovative ideas and technologies.

The Yorkshire & Humber AHSN has three core objectives; improving population health, improving healthcare and generating economic growth. Join the YH AHSN mailing list at info@yhahsn.com or follow us on twitter @AHSN_YandH

Download the D4H15 Sponsor Pack

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