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Building egressibility in an ageing society

The project Building Egressibility in an Ageing Society is an interdisciplinary project conducted as a joint effort between the Division of Fire Safety Engineering and the Centre for Ageing and Supportive Environments (CASE) at Lund University.

Accessibility and egressibility (that is the ability to evacuate in case of emergency) are both established areas in research and policy, but they are often treated separately. Recent advancements in the area of accessibility has led to more people of varying functional capacity being able to enjoy the public environments. Egressibility has not received the same amount of attention, and is therefore lacking in many instances.

The aim of the project is to develop the concept egressibility for all in order to ensure safe egress for all people, despite varying functional capacity.

The project consists of four different parts. First, two literature reviews have been conducted and have already identified what is known when it comes about egressibility and accessibility in people with lower functional capacity, and specifically identified where such knowledge is lacking (for example, in people with cognitive impairments or multiple limitations). The second part that is about to be conducted will consist of phone interviews with people over 60 years old who also experience some functional limitations.

The aim of the interviews is to identify problems or struggles in the interaction with the environment when it comes to egress. Next, experiments in Virtual Reality (VR) will be conducted in order to quantify these struggles. Finally, we will use the results from the previous parts to develop an egressibility scale which will facilitate identifying and quantifying egressibility problems for older people with functional limitations.

The project is funded by FORMAS and was started in 2019. The project is expected to be concluded by the end of 2021/beginning of 2022.

Partners

Enrico Ronchi, Senior Lecturer (project lead)

Erik Smedberg, Doctoral Student

Centre for Ageing and Supportive Environments (CASE)

Project members