TOPIC - The Online Platform For Informal Caregivers

Motivation

When someone becomes beyond recovery with diseases like Alzheimer’s, dementia or sclerosis, the caretaking is often done by his or her relatives. Due to demographic change, it is likely that the proportion of elderly informal caregivers will rise in the future. For many of the (mostly unskilled) caregivers domestic care quickly becomes more challenging than a full-time job and goes along with physical, mental and emotional stress.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Objectives and approach

The European project TOPIC aims to obtain a profound understanding of the daily life and care in families or households by conducting a qualitative, social science research and the Siegen "Living Lab”-approach. Thereby, it is possible to learn from the elderly informal caregivers and thus recognize the specific requirements they need to be really supported. Subsequently, a computer-based information- and communication platform will be developed that supports caregivers in their daily lives and especially in their familiar home environment. The platform (comparable to a website or a homepage) will approximately consist of different areas and service offerings such as a "learning corner", in which one can inform oneself about the respective disease (such as dementia, Alzheimer and apoplectic strokes) or a corner in which one can learn about important care practices. A main area of the platform will provide the quick and easy exchange of experiences with other informal caregivers that find themselves in a similar situation.

Thereby, traditional ways of communication are going to be expanded and no longer limited to using just the telephone or internet services. Furthermore, the new platform will be much better adjusted to the relevant target- respectively age-group, the social environment and activities which often dramatically change within the time of taking care of a relative.

TOPIC is a project of the research field “New Media for Supporting the Social Partaking of Elderly People” (‘Inclusive Aging’)

Project duration:

August 2013 – August 2016


Contacts:

Marén Schorch M.A.

Sociology

– Research assistant –

Lin Wan M.Sc.

Computer Science and Commun. Engineering

– Research assistant –

Bastian Weiß B.A.

Media culture

– Student –

Magdalena Walczuch B.Sc.

Information Systems

– Student –

Mustafa C. Izol

Information Systems

– Student –

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University of Siegen
Kohlbettstraße 15,
Room: US-E 115
57072 Siegen

Tel.: +49 (0) 271/ 740 - 2424
Fax: +49 (0) 271/ 740 - 3384

University of Siegen
Kohlbettstraße 15,
Room: US-E 117
57072 Siegen
 

Tel.: +49 (0) 271/ 740-3474

University of Siegen
Kohlbettstraße 15
57072 Siegen
University of Siegen
Kohlbettstraße 15
57072 Siegen
University of Siegen
Kohlbettstraße 15
57072 Siegen

Research partners:

University of Siegen, Germany, Team Prof. Dr. Volker Wulf
Vienna University of Technology, Austria, Team Prof. Dr. Hilda Tellioglu (Coordinator)
University of Technology of Troyes, France, Team Prof. Dr. Myriam Lewkowicz ?
ilogs mobile software GmbH, Klagenfurt, Austria
SOZIAL GLOBAL Aktiengesellschaft, Vienna, Austria
SOPHIA Franken GmbH & Co KG, Bamberg, Germany
AVINOTEC GmbH, Siegen, Germany
E-Seniors, Paris, France
Webinage, Neufchatel-Hardelot, France

Cooperating partner:

Diakonie Pflege und Rehabiliation gGmbH, Siegen

Websites:

Website TOPIC project consortium

University of Siegen -TOPIC project

Flyers for interested informal caregivers.

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