EFA Keynote: Using Empathy To Create Better Designs

Agronin kicked off the 9th annual Environments for Aging Conference in Baltimore (April 18-21) with an opening session on “Turning Empathy Into Action,” where he said thinking about older adults from one perspective and carrying negative associations with aging limits thinking and constricts how we approach design.
Using quotes from famous philosophers, artists, and authors, Agronin discussed how perceptions of aging have been the same for centuries. However, modern studies on the brain show areas such as creativity persist and even grow as we age and that cognition and emotional skills can follow new patterns with maturity. 
Agronin said the trend in person-centered care is creating more homelike setting for residents and providing people with more choices in activities, places to dine, and activities to participate in.  

by Anne DiNardo,