Prof. Eef Hogervorst and I started the Applied Cognition, Technology and Interaction Group because we felt that there was a lack of contact between biomedical, psychological, design, and interactional research into dementia and dementia care. We wanted to encourage researchers to talk to each other across different methodological persuasions, and to develop opportunities to work together on collaborative projects.

The format of our monthly meetings is simple: we meet (online at the moment), we have informal ~10 minute presentations from one senior and one earlier career scholar, then everyone offers feedback and encouragement.

Every four months we plan to hold a research networking event – both in person and online (thanks to the Alzheimer’s Research UK’s Midlands ECR Network for their support with online conferencing this year), where presenters can share their work more widely in a short presentation and feedback format, along with two keynote talks from inspiring researchers using very different approaches. At each meeting we will also showcase one project-in-progress for a more structured group feedback.

Our first ACTInG research networking event is on Tuesday 6th July 2021. It will be mostly online due to social distancing measures, but the intention is that future events will also have more opportunities to meet in person. There is a program available with abstracts and timings if you would like to drop in for some or all of the event.

We also started ACTInG because we saw an opportunity to engage with the intended beneficiaries of our research – people living with dementia and related impairments and disabilities, as well as health/social care professionals and policymakers. Through design feedback sessions and other events, we aim to involve people in shaping early-stage research, and to foster ongoing relationships that open the research process to forms of engaged co-production.

Our first dementia care design feedback session will take place on the morning of the 6th July, focusing on a design for a specialist dementia care facility by architect Bill Halsall, author of Design for Dementia (volumes 1 and 2). If you and/or someone you know with interest and personal experience would be willing to provide feedback in these early stages of the project, we would be very grateful.

If you are a researcher relevant relevant work you’d like to share at one of our meetings, please join us! Or if you’d like to let our network know about other opportunities, ideas or related events – drop us an email and we’ll share it.

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