Veronika Egger is an information designer who has long been interested in how the design of information, products and environments contribute towards people's quality of life. She started with product graphics at Philips Design and went on to lead an interdisciplinary user-interface group. Her company, is-design GmbH
, focuses on the usefulness of information for people and the experience of interacting with the environment. She is a partner in mobility research projects, gives seminars and talks on inclusive information design, and teaches at various courses in Austria. She is a board member of the International Institute for Information Design (IIID), a life fellow of the Communication Research Institute in Melbourne, Australia, and a co-founder of the Austrian design for all
Monday 7 April: Design for health and wellbeing
Session 2Presenting with Hanni Rützler
Food Information for People: the quality of information elements on food packaging
Over the past decade consumers have experienced an increasing number of more or less understandable or usable information on food packaging. Some of it is the result of legislation, some informs us about aspects of quality, some is intended to inform us about health and nutrition.
The two authors, a food scientist and an information designer, wanted to find out how people deal with all these information elements on a daily basis. From their respective points of view they asked the following questions: which of the standard information elements are useful and understandable; and how can a language of flavour help people understand quality and anticipate the taste of what they are buying?
They developed a dummy product for the study complete with manufacturer’s identity, packaging, feedback opportunities, location in the supermarket, handling instructions, storage, sell-by information, etc. as well as some new elements. Qualitative interviews investigated all points of contact people have with a product: from shopping to storage, preparation, eating and disposal.
A complex mix of rational and emotional elements emerged, indicating how people may perceive food and food information and how different types of information assume importance at different times during the chain of events.
The talk leads us through the merging of two very different fields of research, shows surprising results, and gives some views on how food information may develop.