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The University of Southampton
Getting out and about: using technologies for safer walking

Meet the team and project partners


Participatory research includes people who are end users of the research to develop and refine the project, and advise the research team. The team are really pleased to have a great group of people on board - including people with dementia, family members and carers, practitioners, industry and the police.


Ruth Bartlett PI
Ruth Bartlett

Ruth Bartlett

Associate Professor and principal investigator

I designed this project when the police and local authorities starting giving out GPS devices to families living with dementia. Some people disapproved because they considered it an infringement on a person's liberty and privacy. 

However, it seemed to me a potential route for citizenship as such technologies could provide a way for people with dementia to stay connected to the local communities. I have always been interested in understanding and improving the experiences and rights of people with dementia, and like working with people and organisations that have a different background to me including artists and those who campaign for better quality of care. This latest project is all about exploring how individuals and families use technologies when out and about so we can produce information that all decision makers can use.

 Relevant publications:

Bartlett R (2015) Realising disability rights in dementia care: Using location technologies as an example, Nordic Journal for Palliative Medicine, 4, 31 - 34.

Bartlett R (2014) Citizenship in action: Examining the experiences of people with dementia who campaign for social change, Disability and Society, 29, 8, 1291 - 1304

Bartlett R and O'Connor D (2010) Broadening the dementia debate: toward social citizenship. Bristol: Policy Press. 

Tula Brannelly

Senior Research Fellow


I work on this project full time, and my role is to manage the project and conduct the research. I have a particular interest in participatory methods, and the ethics of care. I have a longstanding interest in the experiences of people with dementia and their families, from a research and originally a practice background. My research is concerned with the ethics of service responses to the difficulties faced by people in everyday life.

Relevant publications:

Barnes M, Brannelly T, Ward L and Ward N (2015), Ethics of Care: Critical international perspectives, Bristol, Policy Press

Brannelly T, Boulton A and Wilson S (2013) Developing Citizens: Missed opportunities in Health and Social Service Provision? A view from Aotearoa New Zealand, Child and Youth Services doi: 10.1080/0145935X.2013.825545

Brannelly T (2011) Sustaining citizenship: older people with dementia and the phenomenon of social death, Nursing Ethics.


John Coggon


Professor of Law and the Philosophy of Public Health

I have expertise in law and ethics, and will be providing input on the ethico-legal foundations of, and constraints on, proposed solutions to the problems we are studying.

I have a long-standing interest in mental capacity law, especially in regard to questions concerning vulnerability as a legal concept, determinations of decision-making incapacity, and the application of the best interests standard. I am interested to explore these matters as applied to the project's aims and goals.

Relevant publications:

John Coggon, What Makes Health Public? A Critical Evaluation of Moral, Legal, and Political Claims in Public Health, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012)

John Coggon and José Miola, “Autonomy, Liberty, and Medical Decision-Making,” Cambridge Law Journal (2011) 70:3, 523-547

John Coggon, “Varied and Principled Understandings of Autonomy in English Law: Justifiable Inconsistency or Blinkered Moralism?” Health Care Analysis (2007) 15:3, 235-255


Caroline Holland


Senior Research Fellow (The Open University)

My role on the project is to help the team to make sense of the data generated by the study, and in developing the practical guidance.

My interests in this project include understanding how older people and people living with disabilities approach new technologies in the context of their previous experiences; how they learn to use new technologies; and what motivates people to carry on using them or discard them. Mobile and wearable technologies extend the reach of assistive technologies into public places and I am interested in understanding whether and in what ways they can affect how people living with dementia interact with familiar and unfamiliar places. In addition the project will allow us to explore further the practical ethics of older people with dementia sharing information with family members and professionals such as police and social workers.


Holland, C. (2015). 'Values and Ethics in making emerging technologies work for older people'. In: First International Conference, ITAP 2015 - Held as part of HCI International 2015 (Zhou, Jia and Gavriel, Salvendy eds.), 2-7 August 2015, Los Angeles, USA. Springer, pp. 201–209.

Holland, C. (2015) Public places and age In: Twigg, Julia and Martin, Wendy eds. Routledge Handbook of Cultural Gerontology. Routledge International Handbooks.Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 455–462.

Tetley, J., Holland, C., Waights, V., Hughes J., Holland, S. and Warren, S. (2015) 'Exploring New Technologies through Playful Peer-to-Peer Engagement in Informal Learning'. In: Prendergast, David and Garattini, Chiara eds. Aging and the Digital Life Course. Life Course, Culture and Aging: Global Transformations. New York/Oxford: Berghahn, pp. 39–62.


Alex Forrester

Phil Palmer

Associate Professor

Project partners


Dave Brown Detective Chief Inspector, Hampshire Constabulary. Dave is interested in the role that police have in mutually beneficial prevention strategies for vulnerable adults.

Julia Lury, Occupational Therapist, Southern Health NHS Trust.  I work with the Community Mental Health Team East Southampton. I'm interested in promoting safer walking for older people with dementia, with the aim to keep people at home for longer and promote their independence.



The team are very pleased to have additional expertise from advisers.

The advisers are:

  • people living with dementia
  • family members
  • representatives from Dementia Friendly Communities
  • mobile services and technologies industry
  • Admiral nursing and
  • local councils.

The advisers help to make the research more relevant and useful to end users of the research.

The role of the advisory group is to comment on the design and implementation of the research; bring networks of interested others so that research outcomes can be disseminated widely to the right stakeholders; co-produce practical guidance for commissioners, practitioners, people living with dementia and their care networks, and the police to help with safer walking.

At our first advisory group meeting, the name SAGE was selected for the group of people with dementia and family members that are advising this project.

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