Summer School on Home Care Systems
1st-5th June 2009, University of Edinburgh
A SICSA/SFC-Sponsored Event
The information on this page describes the organisation and logistics of
the summer school. The speakers
and programme of the summer school are described on a separate page.
See the short description if
you wish a quick overview.
Summer School Theme
Dates and Venue
Summer School Background
Summer School Topic
Summer School Accommodation
Travel to Edinburgh
Summer School Speakers
The summer school will deal with technologies for home care:
a UK and international perspective on home care systems
user requirements and stakeholder perspectives on technologies for home
home networks and service platforms in support of home care delivery
telecare data acquisition, processing and visualisation
multimodal interfaces to support easy use of home care systems
speech technology for natural interaction with home users.
Monday 1st June 2009 - Friday 5th June 2009
Informatics Forum, 10 Crichton Street, University of
The problems arising from an ageing population have been recognised at an
international level. In the UK, for example, older people accounted for 16%
of the population in 2000; by 2040 this is estimated to rise to 36%. This
pattern is being repeated across all developed countries. It is economically
infeasible for society to provide specialised care facilities for such a
large number of people. It is also socially undesirable for older people to
leave their own home and enter a care facility – especially since older
people are increasingly healthier and largely able to look after themselves.
There is therefore a strong need to help people prolong independent living
in their own homes. A significant number of other people could also gain
from being able to stay at home (e.g. those with physical or mental
impairment, or those with long-term medical conditions). A strong element
of human involvement must remain in care delivery to the home. However,
appropriate technologies can greatly help to support someone receiving care
at home. These technologies can inform the dialogue of care, provide the
user with advice, identify trends or anomalies that may require
intervention, monitor potentially undesirable situations, provide
reassurance to family members and informal carers, and relieve professional
carers of routine low-level monitoring tasks. Technological support can also
bring economic benefits. For example, the cost of looking after someone in a
care home is expensive – and the level of such facilities will become
increasingly inadequate. The need for telecare has been recognised at the
highest levels across the world.
Technologies in support of home care go under a number of labels. 'Assisted
Living' refers to devices and services that allow users to prolong
independent living at home. 'Assistive technology' covers all kinds of
devices that help with daily living. 'Telecare' refers to localised devices
and services that support daily living, but with a remote link to support
services such as a call centre. 'Telehealth' involves remote monitoring,
consultation and diagnosis of health issues. 'Telehealthcare' also includes
social implications of home care. 'Smart Homes' focus more on home
automation and monitoring. 'Home Care Systems' is the term used in this
summer school to emphasise the devices and services deployed in the home
to support care delivery.
project (Mobilising Advanced Technologies for Care at Home) is supported
mainly by the Scottish
Funding Council from November 2005 to October 2009. The Universities of
Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling are working on
MATCH to develop a research infrastructure for supporting care delivery to
the home, with each University contributing its distinctive research
The summer school will deal with the broad subject of home care systems, but
focusing mainly on applications in social care (i.e. helping people with
daily living). Healthcare aspects will be addressed indirectly through their
effects on social aspects and how these can best be supported. The summer
school will reflect the unique expertise of its organising Universities, and
will build on the distinctive set of skills and techniques that they have
extended through the MATCH project. The summer school will also have access
to external speakers thanks to the strong partnerships that have been built
up by MATCH with professional care providers, manufacturers of assistive
technology, and academic researchers in this area.
The summer school is designed for postgraudate students with an interest in
a broad range of technologies that support care delivery to the home. As
these technologies are generic, students with an interest in other
applications besides home care should still consider attending. Students
from a variety of disciplines outside computer science should also find the
summer school of interest.
The summer school will be pitched at a level appropriate for postgraduates.
The focus will be on high-level functions in a home care system, and on use
of specific computing technologies for home care: networks, services,
sensors, data visualisation, speech, human-computer interaction. Practical
experience of computer systems and networks is therefore desirable. However,
do not need to be experienced in the design or development of
computer software, hardware, systems or networks. The summer school offers a
unique mix of lectures with practical work.
Given some practical computing experience, students in non-computing
disciplines should find the summer school of value. For example, the summer
school should appeal to students in areas such as architecture, design,
economics, electronics, healthcare, housing policy, management, nursing,
psychology, social science or social work. Care professionals (e.g.
community nurses, occupational therapists, social workers, telecare
developers) might also wish to consider attending.
Although the summer school will be attractive to UK postgraduate students,
the global nature of the subject matter is also relevant to postgraduate
students internationally (particularly Europe, Japan and North America).
Fees for the summer school do not include travel or other
subsistence costs, which will need to be paid by the student's home
institution. However, the fees do include the following:
four nights in a University of Edinburgh
continental breakfast (it appears that the residence is no longer offering
this, so we will try to arrange it at the summer school venue)
- lunches, tea/coffee breaks, welcome reception, farewell dinner
- a printed copy of speaker slides and summer school material.
Thanks to sponsorship by SICSA, up to 13 students at Scottish Universities
will be able to attend the summer school without paying fees. A fee of
£200 will be payable by other students: Scottish University students
beyond this limit, students from outside Scotland (including the rest of the
UK), and non-University students. This fee is a significant reduction on the
true cost thanks to sponsorship by the MATCH project.
Places on the summer school may be limited, so early registration is
advisable. To register for the summer school, the student's institution
(e.g. the student's supervisor) should contact the summer school organiser:
Two template letters have been provided, depending on whether the student is
from a Scottish University:
Registration (and payment if required) must be completed by 1st May
2009. Cancellations and refunds are possible up to this date, but no
cancellation or refund is possible after this point. Substitution of
students from the same institution may be made before 25th May 2009.
If a student needs to apply for a visa, this should be stated in the
registration letter. A letter of invitation will be sent to the student's
institution once the summer school fee has been paid.
Accommodation in shared, twin-bedded, same-gender rooms will be provided in
Fountain Court Apartments (EQ-2, 1 Lower Gilmore Bank,
Edinburgh, EH3 9QP). Cooking facilities are available in the accommodation.
Do not book the accommodation directly as it will be booked
as part of the registration process. Accommodation arrangements can be
varied at the time of registration:
arrival earlier than 1st June 2009, or departure after 5th June 2009
(subject to availability, increasing the summer school fee)
single-occupancy or family room (subject to availability, increasing the
summer school fee)
- no accommodation (reducing the summer school fee).
The summer school will be held centrally in Edinburgh, about 15 minutes walk
from the main railway station (Waverley) and airport bus terminus. Edinburgh
is well served by buses, trains and flights. See the Edinburgh
International Airport web site (Flight Information tab) for details of
scheduled, low-cost and charter flights to Edinburgh. It would also be
feasible to fly to Glasgow International Airport, but public transport
from there to Edinburgh would take roughly 90-120 minutes. (Note that Glasgow Prestwick Airport
is a significant distance from Glasgow and would add roughly 60 minutes to