Design challenges for reconnecting in later life: A qualitative study

Francisco Ibarra, Grzegorz Kowalik, Marcos Baez, Radosław Nielek, Norma Lau, Luca Cernuzzi, Fabio Casati

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Friendships and social interactions are renown contributors to wellbeing. As such, keeping a healthy amount of relationships becomes very important as people age and the size of their social network tends to decrease. In this paper, we take a step back and explore reconnection -find out about or re-contact old friends, an emerging topic due to the increased use of computer-mediated technology by older adults to maintain friendships and form new ones. We report on our findings from semi-structured interviews with 28 individuals from Costa Rica and Poland. The interviews aimed to explore whether there is a wish to reconnect, and the challenges encountered by older adults to reconnect. We contribute with design considerations for tools allowing older adults to reconnect, discussing opportunities for technology.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDIS 2018 - Companion Publication of the 2018 Designing Interactive Systems Conference
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9781450356312
Publication statusPublished - 30 May 2018
Externally publishedYes
Event2018 Designing Interactive Systems Conference, DIS 2018 - Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Duration: 9 Jun 201813 Jun 2018

Publication series

NameDIS 2018 - Companion Publication of the 2018 Designing Interactive Systems Conference


Conference2018 Designing Interactive Systems Conference, DIS 2018
CountryHong Kong
CityHong Kong


  • Design challenges
  • Older adults
  • Qualitative study
  • Reconnection
  • Social networks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications

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