Living labs for patient engagement and knowledge exchange: An exploratory sequential mixed methods study to develop a living lab in paediatric rehabilitation

Mandy M. Archibald, Kristy Wittmeier, Matthew Gale, Florencia Ricci, Kelly Russell, Roberta L. Woodgate

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
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Introduction Despite recognition of the importance of patient engagement in research and knowledge translation, systematic approaches to engagement and co-ideation remain limited. Living labs are collaborative knowledge sharing systems that use multimethod, user-centred approaches that hold potential to catalyse these aims. However, their use in healthcare is limited, and no living lab has been developed in paediatric rehabilitation. In response to this gap and to propel innovative knowledge exchange, we propose a mixed methods study to co-develop a living lab prototype (ie, preliminary infrastructure with opportunity for scale up) in paediatric rehabilitation, with relevance to other healthcare contexts. Methods An exploratory sequential mixed methods study will be undertaken to determine research and knowledge exchange priorities and to inform the development of the living lab prototype. Stage 1: we will use a multipronged approach to sample 18-21 youth with developmental differences or rehabilitation needs, their youth siblings and parents/guardians from a provincial paediatric rehabilitation centre, to participate in qualitative and arts-based data collection. Data will provide insight into desirable features of the living lab. Stage 2: E-surveys to youth, siblings, parents/guardians and clinicians who receive or provide services at this same centre will expand on priorities and living lab features. Stage 3: integrated analysis will inform the living lab prototype development. Analysis Inductive thematic analysis using interpretive description, integrated analysis of visual data and descriptive and content analysis of e-survey data will be undertaken. Joint displays will facilitate data integration. Priorities will be identified using a modified rank-order method for each key living lab domain. Ethics and dissemination Institutional ethics and site approval have been granted. A parent advisory group and rehabilitation engineering partners will confer on data and inform the development of the living lab prototype. User engagement with the prototype will occur during an online or in-person event, and findings shared through non-technical research summaries, journal articles and academic presentations.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere041530
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 4 May 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • developmental neurology & neurodisability
  • paediatrics
  • qualitative research
  • rehabilitation medicine


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