The second skin research network aims to develop new advanced textile solutions directed at alleviating some of the most chronic medical conditions which have a direct impact on an individual's self esteem.

Through the application of advanced technology and design, this project seeks to develop new wearable smart clothing concepts with direct relevance to a range of mobility and health issues.

 The project will adopt a co-design model in which end users are involved at the start of the project to ensure a close fit between need, technology and eventual implementation. A multi-disciplinary team of researchers will share expertise across the fields of fashion, textiles and product design, advanced materials, computing and life sciences.

The project provides an opportunity to look for synergies between advanced technologies and new materials and will prototype and visualize new solutions which can be implemented with the aid of commercial partners.


The network’s objectives are 

  • To establish a focus group representing individuals with health and mobility issues.
  • To develop a list of critical insights impacting on individuals’ mobility and quality of life
  • To compile a list of materials and technologies, which can be incorporated into a design concept to provide relevant solutions for the benefit of individuals with mobility issues
  • To create a range of design concepts including both virtual and real prototypes in response to the needs identified
  • To evaluate these concepts in consultation with user groups including an initial focus group and commercial partners
  • To develop a website using an open innovation model to invite feedback and encourage further commercial uptake


Co-Development Workshop 1 (held on September 13th 2013 at RGU)

The workshop aim was as follows:

  • To consider how to facilitate a co-design process in which end-users, designers and technologists can come together to explore solutions that address both the physical and emotional needs of individuals with medical issues affecting mobility.
  • To explore technology which allows the development of virtual prototypes as a way of exploring concepts whilst engaging with end-users

Key speakers at the workshop were:

Deana McDonagh

srcImageTeaserDeana McDonagh

Empathic Design: Designing for Real People.

Dr Simeon Gill

srcImageTeaserDr Simeon Gill

Body Scanning for Fashion Design.

D K Arvind

srcImageTeaserD K Arvind

Speckled Computing.

The second workshop will be held at Ulster University on the 5th March 2014, with the third workshop taking place at the Maklab in Glasgow on the 7th March 2014


The network members include:


For further information about this research network please contact:


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