Exploring Desirable and Avoidable Product Qualities for a Universal Design Easy Chair

Elin Olander, Lena Sperling

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper, not in proceedingpeer-review


From a universal design perspective, products should attract both people with disabilities and other persons. Design of chairs has decisive importance for activity and independence of users with physical disabilities. In an experimental study aiming at an easy chair with universal design qualities, six able-bodied young adults were asked to position a wide range of photo-represented chairs, including private and institutional chairs, on a compass chart board and were asked to “think aloud” about their experiences. Results were compared with data from a previous study with participants of upper middle age. Products from both studies were selected for experiments with two young adults with disability. One additional participant performed the experiment over five consecutive days. An adjustable process could be seen for some products as positions were moved into more positive sectors. A relevant level of exactness could be decided for evaluation of results generated with the compass chart. Key sentences could be identified for desirable and avoidable qualities of easy chairs. Similarities and differences in statements of users of the three groups are presented and discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Eventthe 2nd international conference Universal Design - Kyoto, Japan.
Duration: 0001 Jan 2 → …


Conferencethe 2nd international conference Universal Design
Period0001/01/02 → …

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics


  • Chairs
  • Product qualities
  • Mediating tools
  • Design elements
  • Universal design


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