Fourth International Workshop on Socio-gerontechnology

Call for papers for the Fourth International Workshop on Socio-gerontechnology

Exploring the co-constitution of ageing and technologies during Covid and beyond


 Dates: 8th- 9th September 2022

Location: University of Bristol, UK.


The network

The Socio-gerontechnology network is interested in exploring the entanglements of ageing and technologies. The network seeks to strengthen critical and reflexive thinking and research by emphasising the complex and co-constitutive relationship between ageing, technology and society. It brings together international scholars from a variety of disciplinary background (i.e. critical and cultural gerontology, science and technology studies (STS), sociology, anthropology, age studies, HCI and education) and provides a forum for productive, open and supportive exchange and dialogue, with the aim of fostering curiosity, reflexivity and enthusiasm for researching the topic. The network embraces both early and more established academic scholars but has a particular emphasis on activities that support early career scholars. After previous meetings in Vienna (2017), Barcelona (2018) and Stockholm (2019), this is the fourth annual workshop of the Socio-Gerontechnology Network. Since 2020 the network has also run a successful online seminar series entitled, ‘International Conversations in Ageing and Technology.’


The call for papers

Exploring the co-constitution of ageing and technologies during Covid and beyond


In many countries the pandemic has made the relationship between ageing and technology use and design more visible. From grandparents learning to use video conferencing to connect with their families to the care workers and medical staff delivering some forms of care in online spaces. Often the debates presented in the mainstream media have focussed on established binaries and stereotypes, pointing out the ‘digital divide’ between those who are tech savvy and those who are not, or between technologies that work well in the private sphere and public sphere.

In contrast, this conference call is looking for papers and other proposals that explore the co-constitutive relationship between ageing, technology and society.

We invite papers that explore what happens when scholars from the social sciences, humanities or design engage in research and practice about the co-constitution/ mutual shaping of ageing and technology? What logics govern these encounters? What radical new models emerge that might be useful for the fields of ageing and technology? How do multiple and innovative methods emerge in design and research processes? (How) does this research lead to better policies and practices in relation to technology design and innovation for older people?

We particularly welcome reflections on the above topics in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic and moving beyond the pandemic. This might include reflection on how and what we can learn from our design and research experiences in pandemic times and how these experiences have opened up, or closed down, new opportunities for research and engagement with older people and technologies?

We invite scholars working across disciplinary boundaries to explore themes related to their critical engagement in ageing and technology debates. Whilst our network is focused on contributions from STS and Age Studies we are interested in fostering critical interdisciplinary debate about the design and role of technologies in relation to the lives of older people. For this workshop, we invite contributions from a wide disciplinary background in the social sciences, arts and humanities, including but not limited to critical and cultural gerontology, science and technology studies, design research, sociology, anthropology, age studies, HCI and education.


Themes may include (but are not limited to):

  • Interdisciplinary studies in ageing and technology,
  • Innovative methods in studying ageing and technology, including creative adjustments, reflections and learning around methods during and post Covid19
  • New modes of collaboration- with policy makers, older people, business or others
  • Ethics in ageing and technology research
  • Organisational practices and how they influence research in ageing and technology
  • Policy and practice entanglements
  • Materialities, biopolitics and temporalities in research


We encourage participants to submit proposals in a variety of forms. Please send up to 300 words by May 12th, 2022 proposing one of the following directly to

  • A 15 minute academic paper
  • A 45-60 minute workshop
  • A poster presentation or
  • A showcase of a technology design, labs or installations


Conference Schedule 


Wednesday 7th September

Wednesday night: Executive board (informal meeting) + committee members meal


Thursday 8th September

9-9.15am arrival, tea and coffee

9.15-9.45 Introductions and welcome – introductions to the University of Bristol, Ageing Futures, BDFI and Sociodigital Futures. Intros to the network and network futures. Ground rules.

9.45-10.45 Paper Session 1: The co-constitution of technology and care

CHAIR: Matthew Lariviere

  • The co-constitution of technology and care in UK home care. Dr Kate Hamblin, CIRCLE, University of Sheffield. Dr Diane Burns, School of Management, University of Sheffield, Dr Cate Goodlad, CIRCLE, University of Sheffield.
  • It just blinks’ – The becoming-older-with welfare technologies. Michela Cozza, Department of Organization and Management, Mälardalen University, Sweden

10.45- 11.15 BREAK, tea and coffee and fruit/biscuits

11.15-12.30: Paper Session 2: Innovation and design

CHAIR: Helen Manchester

  • Vitality as an inspiration for design? Lessons from a qualitative study among older adults with a sense of vitality. Louis Neven, Sophie Bouwens, Marleen Mares, Avans University
  • Do people with COPD dream of the same electric sheep? Bergschöld, J.M. SINTEF Digital. Dept of Health, Granås, S.B., SINTEF Digital. Dept of Health Anfinsen, M., SINTEF Digital. Dept of Health
  • Valuation in health and ageing innovation. A Covid-19 app thought experiment. Susan van Hees, Carla Greubel, Ellen Moors, Alexander Peine

12.30pm University of Bristol/Policy Press, Paul Stevens

LUNCH and Posters 12.45-2pm

2-.3.30pm WORKSHOP: “Infrastructures for well connected ageing”. Carla Gruebel (Utrecht University), Daniel López Gómez (Open University of Catalonia), Roser Beneito-Montagut (Cardiff University), Mònica Genover (Universitat de Barcelona), Alice Willatt (University of Bristol), Sanna Kuoppamäki (KTH Royal Institute of Technology)and Doris Lydahl (University of Gothenburg)

3.30pm Break, tea and coffee and cake

4- 5pm: Paper session 3

CHAIR: Juliane Jarke

  • Irritating Dyadic Interaction Concepts for Human-Robot Interaction – The Case of a Nautical Designed Plant Watering Robot for a Care Home. Andreas Bischof* & Philipp Graf, Chemnitz University of Technology
  • Using telepresence robots as a tool for virtual research during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Lillian Hung1, Charlie Lake1, Joey Wong1, Ali Hussein, Jim Mann (UBC IDEALab, University of British Columbia), and Mario Gregorio (Alzheimer Society of Canada, Toronto, Canada)
  • Co-constitution of conversational agents for independent living among older adults. Sanna Kuoppamäki, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Department of Biomedical Engineering and Health Systems, Sweden

5-5.30pm Dance for dementia workshop

SGT DINNER 7.15pm at River Station

Meet outside school of Education at 18.50 for walk down together or see you there at 7.15pm

Venue is:


Friday 9th September

9.30-10.45: Paper Session 4: Everyday navigation

CHAIR: Daniel Lopez Gomez

  • Coping in the culture of connectivity: how older people make sense of living with digital ageism. Magdalena Kania-Lundholm, Dalarna University.
  • Arts and Health during the Covid-19 pandemic: how did creative professionals experience the transition to online delivery of arts and health interventions for older adults in Wales? Sofia Vougioukalou, Research Fellow, Y Lab, School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University
  • Technological entanglements: Explorations of the tangibility, sensuality and intimacy of technologies as we age. Alice Willatt and Helen Manchester, University of Bristol

10.45- 11 Break: tea, coffee and fruit/biscuits

11-12.15 Paper Session 5: Policy framings, future imaginaries and predictive analytics

CHAIR: Alexander Peine

  • Artificing care: Resolving contemporary care problems in imagined techno-futures. Matthew Lariviere, University of Bristol
  • What is an Algorithm? Expanding gerontology’s imagination on Ageing and Algorithms. Vera Gallistl, PhD, Karl Leandsteiner, University of Health Sciences, Krems, Austria
  • Visualizing the Datasphere: Representations of Old Bodies and their Data in Promotional Images of Smart Sensor Technologies for Ageing at Home, Kirsten L. Ellison [1], Wendy Martin [2], Isabel Pedersen [3] and Barbara L. Marshall [1]

12.15-1pm Poster session with authors (authors please be available at your posters during this time)

1pm- 2 LUNCH

2-3.30pm Workshop Imagining alternative futures for care, connectivity and community in datafied societies. Juliane Jarke, University of Bremen and Helen Manchester , University of Bristol

3.30pm Break. Tea, coffee and cake

4-4.30: Lab presentations. Lillian Hung and Louis Neven

4.30-5.30pm Alex Peine will lead SGT network meeting: bringing themes of the conference together and discussing what next? CONFERENCE ENDS


PDF version


Bristol Information



You have choices of where to stay in Bristol. Bristol is a hilly city and the University is at the top of a hill in the area of Clifton. The conference will be happening at 35 Berkeley Square, BS8 1JA. From the harbourside area of the centre of Bristol Berkeley Square is only about a 10-15 minute walk – but it is up a hill.

There are, of course, also many Air BnB options.

Below we have recommended a range of hotels in different price brackets for you to choose from. If you have any questions about where to stay then do get in touch with


Harbourside and City Centre Hotels (NB there are loads of others)


Clifton Apartments and hotels near the venue


Travel in Bristol

Bristol is notoriously bad for traffic but very bike and walking friendly. You can hire bikes from the train station and from various bike hire outlets in the city. We also have electric bikes and scooters (Voi’s) on the streets that are brilliant for getting around town and don’t cost much to hire for a one off trip or for a 24 hour period. If you want to hire a scooter whilst over here you’ll need to bring your driving license with you.


From the Airport

There is a bus that runs from the airport into town – although it takes around 45 minutes. It goes from just outside the airport. There are also taxis available but best to pre-book as they are often very busy.

From the train station

The train station was built by Isambard Kingdom Brunel who was unfortunately not allowed to build in the centre of the city so it is about 10 minute walk into the Harbourside area and another 10-15 minutes from there up the hill to the University. Bikes and scooters are available for hire from the station.

From the bus station

If you arrive at a London airport – Heathrow in particular- it’s quite convenient to get a coach. The coach will drop you at the bottom of the hill near the Bristol Royal Infirmary – about a 15 minute walk up to the University or into the centre of town.


Just get in touch with Helen if you have any questions or worries!