Co-production in the dementia support

In the field of working with the elderly and family assistance, new methods of interface management regarding the care of elderly people with dementia and their relatives caring for them are investigated.

The project entitled “Koproduktion im Welfare Mix der Altenarbeit und Familienhilfe (KoAlFa)” (Co-production in the welfare mix of working with the elderly and family support) aims to develop and test new methods of interface management in the field of the multi-professional and voluntary care of elderly people with dementia and their relatives caring for them. The co-production of people providing informal and formal support and multi-professional cooperation is of particular interest in this regard. The project relies on a whole host of cooperation partners. The research takes place in practice and with practice. Recommendations for the effective co-production of professionals, volunteers and families are developed in the project.

In this Swiss-German binational project, a four-stage qualitative multi-method concept is combined with the implementation of new work practices. The aim is to develop a participatory, learning-orientated research approach on an empirical basis that can be sustainably embedded in practice. Basic hypotheses derived from group discussions in the first phase were revised and expanded in the second phase, primarily through interviews with experts. Further qualitative stages in the research process focus on the perspective of the people affected (elderly people and members of networks). This resulted in the development of an application-orientated medium-range theory proposition and an empirically supported action and organisational model for optimal interface management. This is used systematically as the starting point for the broadly transferable practical implementation. With a view to the qualification of work practices, a distinction is made between three key areas: family, voluntary work and professionals. This is a participatory research and development design, created in cooperation with a number of research, practice and implementation partners.

Interdisciplinary project team

Careum Research: Prof. Dr. Ulrich Otto (Head of the KoAIFa sub-project in Switzerland)
Institute of Applied Nursing Sciences FHS St. Gallen: Prof. André Fringer
University of Applied Services Jena: Prof. Michael Opielka (Overall Project Leader), several research assistants

Interdisciplinary research partner

Leibniz Institute on Ageing – Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI), Jena (Germany)

Development and implementation partner

  • Alzheimer Gesellschaft Thüringen e.V.
  • AWO KV Jena-Weimar e.V.
  • Diakonie Orlatal
  • DRK-KV Jena-Eisenberg-Stadtroda e.V.
  • JeDi Jena e.V.
  • Landesärztekammer Thüringen
  • Mehrgenerationenhaus Gera
  • Pflegestützpunkt Jena
  • Stiftung FamilienSinn
  • Thüringer Ehrenamtsstiftung
  • Thüringer Ministerium für Soziales, Familie und Gesundheit

External funding

German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, SILQUA programme

Duration

2011–2014

Further information

Find out more about the “KoAlFa” project