Caroline Smeenk on designing products to help pregnant women who can't access hospitals

"17% of rural Canadians live over 2 hours away from their nearest hospital."

Part of the Project

From the Series

Though Caroline Smeenk completed her Carleton University studies in user experience design, her thesis project was more an exploration of user experience research, and the final product demonstrates how vital this process is.

After becoming aware of the dangers of preeclampsia - a complication in pregnancy that is the third biggest killer of women globally - Caroline approached the problem as an empathetic researcher first.

This included simulating the experience of pregnancy and the necessary monitoring that goes along with it, which provided her with insights to create her final products. Among them is an app and an ergonomically designed blood pressure monitor.

The project in its entirety demonstrates the power of empathy in the design process, and the value of this process itself.

Read more: 

Kyla Philander on using empathy as a design tool

DesignThinkers uses empathy and observation to lead its design

Empathy and fact in Ekene Ijeoma's emotive projects