Design Innovation for Healthcare

Subject: Optimizing care in paediatric oncology
Partner: Princess Máxima Centre for Paediatric Oncology
Project Leader: Prof. dr. Huib de Ridder


The aim is to advance the quality of patient care by creating healthcare innovations and developing scientific knowledge in which design and technology play a central role. Topics will include intelligent environments that adapt to the changing needs of children with cancer and their families, as well as new products and services that advance the excellence of Princess Máxima Centre staff. Design for development based care, patient experience and teamwork are central themes.


This research project brings together the healthcare expertise of the Princess Máxima Centre for Paediatric Oncology (Prinses Máxima Centrum voor Kinderoncologie) and Delft University of Technology’s innovation expertise.

For more information, see:


Populley (Manuela Schilberg, Lorenzo Guadalupi, Ching Yi Kuo; Phuong-Lan Dihn, Suwen Shen, Cheyenne Schuit)

The Populley is developed for cancer patients between the 6-12 years old. The problem is that cancer patients can become isolated since they often have to stay in a hospital room. Because of their illness and therapy, playing like normal children becomes hard. The Populley must create a safe and fun environment where they can be children again and can enjoy their time with family and friends. For the Advanced Embodiment Design course the Populley had to be optimized on safety and interaction. Besides this, it had to be re-designed for manufacturing.


KonneKt (Job Jansweijer)

The goal of this project was to support the social development of isolated children in child cancer hospitals by bringing them into contact with other children in the hospital. In interviews with children three play types were found: adventurers, gamers and tinkerers. To support each of these play types, an ambiguous game, which could be played on the window to the hallway, was developed: KonneKt.

The game consists of shapes which can be attached to the window. Different meanings can be attributed to the shapes. For example, existing games such as chess can be played with KonneKt, but a tinkerer could build fantasy worlds and adventurers could build an obstacle court. KonneKt enables isolated children to stay connected to the other children in the hospital, and even to play with them!