The research group focuses on notions central to current health care practices and initiatives, such as “user involvement”, “health communication”, “person” and “personalized” (cf. the popular idea of “personalized medicine”), the meaning of which is often uncritically taken for granted. It investigates how to communicate about values and personal matters, both in one-on-one interactions and when it comes to implementing new technology.
It also aims at improving or supplementing existing indicators and methods for assessing health and wellbeing by developing more sensitive methods that take into account factors like patient experience, moods and atmosphere, experience of meaning, the impact of human interaction and physical environment, the balance between safety and autonomy or privacy etc. The practical and normative ramifications of the use of indicators for distributing and prioritizing treatments and interventions among different groups and individuals are further points of focus.
Moreover, the group aims at assessing and possibly improving attempts to combine qualitative and quantitative research designs and rely on user involvement and user satisfaction data, by taking up fundamental questions of methodology and philosophy of science and examining epistemological assumptions and consequences of currently popular user-involving or mixed methods styles of health and medical research.