Smart Homes for the Elderly and the Role of Interior Designers


ABSTRACT Elderly people tend to have losses and disadvantages in many aspects that limit the quality of their lives. However, it is possible to reach the goal of being healthier, more secure and more autonomous with the help of various technological consumer products. Being professionally trained in matching people’s needs to spatial solutions, an interior designer is expected to have an important role in this respect. As a matter of fact, an interior designer’s profession requires being knowledgeable of specific user groups, such as elderly people, and being familiar about current advancements, such as new and emerging technological products. The aim of this study is to determine the role and importance of interior designers on smart homes for the elderly. First, the importance of tailored living spaces −especially for the people of older ages− is explained. The problems, losses and disadvantages of the elderly that affect the human−space relationship are revealed accordingly. Then the role of smart homes on enhancing the quality of older people’s lives are examined. Finally, the role of interior design on helping elderly people to live more autonomously, safer and healthier is discussed.