The LAUGH (Ludic Artefacts Using Gesture and Haptics) research project is designing innovative playful devices that amuse, distract, comfort, engage, bring joy, and promote ‘in the moment’ living for people with late stage dementia.

It builds on wellbeing research that shows that happy people live longer, have fewer falls and require less medication. It will propose non-pharmacological approaches to improve the wellbeing of people with dementia and their care. The researchers are investigating innovative design solutions that incorporate embedded electronics and smart materials.

The research is being partnered by Gwalia Cyf, one of the largest providers of residential social care in Wales, and brings together people with dementia, their carers and a range of health professionals, technologists and designers. The work is also supported by the leading charities in the field: Age Cymru- My Home Life, Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Positive.

The LAUGH project is an international collaboration with researchers at the University of Technology Sydney and Birmingham City University, and is led by Professor Cathy Treadaway from CARIAD, Cardiff Metropolitan University.