DESIRE – Design for all methods to create age-friendly housing
Europe is ageing. Eurostat population projections foresee that the number of people over 65 is expected to grow up to 28.50% by 2050. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the physical and social environment are key determinants of whether people can remain healthy, independent and autonomous long into their old age. Therefore, housing is an important determinant for active and healthy ageing. However, a large part of the housing stock in the EU has not been designed to accommodate the needs of older people. That said, a great opportunity for the building and home furnishings sectors remains open. What is needed is to enforce innovative actions at training level to overcome skills mismatches and promote new design guidelines focused on older adults’ needs. This disruptive change will require a rethinking approach at VET level, as well as a revolution in the minds of professionals and consumers due to lack of awareness and information. D4All has been recognised as a tool to ensure accessibility, wellbeing, physical and mental health for older adults and enable a conscious use of the analysis of the needs as requires the involvement of end-users (Human-Centred Design). In addition, DESIRE will be based on a restorative and ergonomic environmental design in order to detect the interactions between humans and the built environment. This will ensure that, firstly, older adults and, secondly, future generations can remain longer at home while ageing with equal opportunities without facing physical and social barriers in age-friendly housing.