Mireia Fernández-Ardèvol

Mireia Fernández-Ardèvol
Universitat Oberta de Catalunya | UOC · Internet Interdisciplinary Institute - IN3

PhD - University of Barcelona

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80
Publications
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Publications

Publications (80)
Chapter
Our study focuses on myths about older people’s smartphone use. Self-reported data, from Eurostat for example, report access rather than actual usage and are of limited use. What respondents report does not necessarily correspond with their actual smartphone usage behaviour in everyday life. We therefore conducted a tracking study to gain insight i...
Article
Full-text available
The increase in ageing populations has spurred predictions on the growth of a politically powerful old-age bloc. While their protest mobilizations have risen to reach youth standards, there is scarce scholarly evidence of the role of multiple identities in older activists’ involvement. We address this gap by interviewing activists in Iaioflautas, a...
Chapter
Full-text available
Technology companies, when considering the design of their products or services, tend to configure users by scripting appropriate user interactions with their technology. Older users are often seen as laggards who take no part in innovation processes. The scripts for technology use planned by technology companies rarely take older users into accoun...
Article
Full-text available
Drawn from the stress process model, the pandemic has imposed substantial stress to individual economic and mental well-being and has brought unprecedented disruptions to social life. In light of social distancing measures, and in particular physical distancing because of lockdown policies, the use of digital technologies has been regarded as the a...
Article
Ageism is the most invisible form of discrimination. While there is some awareness of gender, racial, and socioeconomic discrimination on digital platforms, ageism has received less attention. This article analyzes some tools that are frequently embedded on digital platforms from an old-age perspective, in order to increase awareness of the differe...
Article
In this paper, we explore ageist depictions of both young and older people as they emerge from discourses addressing ‘other people's’ digital media usage practices. We carried out eight focus groups (four with teenagers, four with people aged 65 or older) in two southern European cities (Rome and Barcelona). By negotiating the affordances and const...
Article
This article analyzes the idioms of practice and media ideologies of adolescents and older adults regarding mobile digital media usage, and how they are negotiated within and between age cohorts. We formed aged-based focus groups in Rome and Barcelona (four groups of 16- to 19-year-olds and four of 65- to 85-year-olds). The comparison provides new...
Chapter
The purpose of the article is to assess the characteristics of the actual dataset obtained in an online-based research project interested in the digitization of later life in four countries by comparing it to the planned sample. It aims is to make visible the consequences of usual constraints –technical or not, and common uncritical assumptions to...
Chapter
Methods to involve users in design have long been used to create relevant content and increase the accuracy of product development. Demographic trends have raised the issue of the needs and demands of older people, especially with regard to digitization. In contrast to the high number of publications discussing the importance of involving people in...
Article
Full-text available
Ageism is the most invisible form of discrimination. While there is some awareness of gender, racial, and socioeconomic discrimination on digital platforms, ageism has received less attention. This article analyzes some tools that are frequently embedded on digital platforms from an old-age perspective, in order to increase awareness of the differe...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The Ageing + Communication + Technologies (ACT) cross-national longitudinal study explores processes of displacement of traditional dominant media by innovative communication practices within the older audience of new media. Replicating Nimrod’s (2017) study of older audiences, data is collected on a biannual basis. The first wave of data collect...
Article
Full-text available
This paper examines representations of old age at the Consumer Electronics Show 2019, identifying how explicit product discourses identify later life with Fourth Age dependency, fragility, decline, and care, as is the case with the home and companion-robot industry. While designers take a Fourth Age approach to the ‘senior market’, they liken their...
Article
Full-text available
Digital systems can track every activity. Their logs are the fundamental raw material of intelligent systems in big data approaches. However, big data approaches mainly use predictions and correlations that often fail in the prediction of minorities or invisibilize collectives, causing discriminatory decisions. While this discrimination has been do...
Chapter
Digital practices in later life are not yet well understood. Therefore, this paper discusses the framework for a research design project that aims at tracing differences and similarities in how older adults use their smartphones in circumstances in and outside their homes in Spain, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Canada. The research questions of this...
Article
The Internet has been a valuable resource for many indigenous groups as a vehicle for self-representation. In this paper, we describe how the installation of a Wi-Fi signal in a Guaraní community in Greater Buenos Aires—as part of the community leader’s decolonizing media projects—generated issues within the community. While much indigenous media r...
Chapter
Full-text available
Older people are a minority in digital media, in terms of both access and use. While the divide in access has decreased, this is not the case with the divide in use. In this chapter, we go deeper into the divide in use, by studying the diversity of smartphone usage among older people. We have used three complementary perspectives: tracked use, repo...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Objectives: Adopting the principles of user experience design (UX), we created three user personas to help design digital and on-site products and services and use in Catalan public library planning to promote patron loyalty and attract new users. Methodology: A representative survey of the Catalan community (1,205 answers) and a bivariate...
Article
Full-text available
The user experience framework (UX) serves to analyze the characteristics, preferences and perceptions of non-users of the public library to inform the (re)design of services. Empirical data come from a representative survey of the Catalan population aged 15 and over. In general terms, libraries and librarians benefit from a positive image, although...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Involving teams from seven countries (Austria, Canada, Denmark, Israel, Netherlands, Romania, and Spain) this Ageing + Communication + Technologies (ACT) project offers a unique opportunity to explore possible processes of displacement of traditional dominant media by innovative communication practices within the older audience of new media. Replic...
Article
Full-text available
The 'aging well' discourse advances the idea of making older people responsible for their capability to stay healthy and active. In the context of an increased ageing population, which poses several challenges to countries' government, this discourse has become dominant in Europe. We explore the way older people are visually represented on websites...
Working Paper
Full-text available
The emergence of networked social movements in 2011 has opened a new door in the social movements’ literature. By adopting a technopolitical and situated approach, in this paper, we explore the case of the Occupy Wall Street movement three years after its formation in September 2011. Through an online survey and a nonprobabilistic sampling procedur...
Working Paper
Full-text available
The emergence of networked social movements in 2011 has opened a new door in the social movements’ literature. By adopting a technopolitical and situated approach, in this paper, we explore the case of the 15M movement three years after its formation in May 2011. Through an online survey and a nonprobabilistic sampling procedure, we pay special att...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Pervasive digital technologies follow a fast innovation path. Thus, the appropriation of new digital devices follows an accumulative learning process. Adult individuals build up gradually their digital skills, mainly through informal learning processes, in response to everyday life particular goals. Empirical information comes from a one-year resea...
Article
Full-text available
This paper explores the combined effects of everyday life technological devices and advertisements in constituting an efficient way to scientific popularization. We, therefore, analyze mobile telephony advertisements published in a high-circulation Spanish newspaper — La Vanguardia — between 1994 and 1999. We identify content that promoted knowledg...
Article
Full-text available
While wearable technologies, such as smartwatches, are seen as an opportunity to solve some problems often related to older people (65+), e.g. emergencies, physical activity, or isolation, little is known about how older people would domesticate such new technologies. In this study we provided eleven older individuals with smartwatches and tracked...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We analyze smartwatch use from an intergenerational perspective to garner non-stereotypical reflections on ageing. The research questions are: (1) How do personal interests shape, and how are they shaped by, first-time use of a smartwatch? (2) To what extent do tracked data help in interpreting the relationship between the user and the device? We a...
Article
Full-text available
Starting from Beck’s concept of reflexivity, the paper investigates differences in risk perception regarding wireless technologies expressed by older people living in Romania and Catalonia (Spain). We combine evidence from conversations held with older individuals in different research projects together with an ad-hoc media content analysis. Our re...
Article
Full-text available
In this research we explore older people’s incentives to use Internet services to communicate with their children and grandchildren, and the factors that make older individuals stop using (or even reject) Internet-mediated communications. We apply the uses and gratifications theory, and the gratification niche of medium concept to understand the wa...
Article
Full-text available
The concepts of user and non-user are frequently deployed within media and communications literature. What do these terms mean if examined regarding age and ageing? In this article we explore and trouble these notions through an analysis of twenty-two conversations with a group of octogenarians and nonagenarians living in a retirement home. Their d...
Chapter
The booming increase of the senior population has become a social phenomenon and a challenge to our societies, and technological advances have undoubtedly contributed to improve the lives of elderly citizens in numerous aspects. In current debates on technology, however, the »human factor« is often largely ignored. The ageing individual is rather s...
Article
In the context of an international research project on older people’s relations with and through mobile telephony, Italian participants spontaneously provided narrations on mobile phones that appeared to be structured around strong stereotypes. Respondents show a twofold representation of mobile phones either as a simple communication tool or as a...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
It is well-documented that ICT are designed mostly with young users in mind. In addition, most studies about smartphone use do not include older people or even consider age differences. Consequently, little is known about how to design smartphone apps taking older people's interests into account. We have used a mixed-method approach with an interge...
Conference Paper
Computers and smartphones are multipurpose devices with overlapping capacities. Thus, users end up interacting with the same information through different devices, sometimes simultaneously (or within a short timeframe). As our artifact ecologies grow, it is clear that the use of multipurpose devices cannot be understood in isolation, and diverse us...
Article
Full-text available
This paper analyzes how older people, living in Spain, use smartphones and smartphone applications. Using a mixed methods approach, we compare quantitative results obtained by tracking mobile app usage amongst different generational samples with qualitative, focus-group discussions with active smartphone users. A sample of Spanish smartphone users...
Article
Full-text available
Questions regarding communication practices in everyday interactions and how people attribute meanings to the communication acts are issues frequently addressed by social-science researchers and practitioners. Qualitative research may reveal possible answers, as it tends to be concerned with meanings (Willig, 2013). This approach can also contribut...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this article is to explain the methodological issues considered in the ongoing research that the authors are involved in on the adoption of mobile telephony among the elderly. The “Mobile Communication and Old Age” research project forms part of the Mobile Communication, Economy and Society Research Program at the Internet Interdisciplin...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We analyze the influence of age on mobile computer anxiety in a sample of 158 individuals 55+ by means of path analysis modeling. Taking as the endogenous variable a mobile computer anxiety scale (MCAS, Wang 2007), models include demographic and socioeconomic variables and a computer experience scale – based on the familiarity and frequency of use...
Conference Paper
Older people’s attitude towards mobile communication constitutes a privileged perspective for analyzing domestication processes of digital technologies. By means of a qualitative case study conducted in Italy, we study older users’ motivations and usage practices. We focus on perceptions of mobile phones, adoption and domestication of mobile phones...
Article
Mobile broadband is playing an increasingly important role in the developing world. However, mobile platform providers and app publishers are dominated by multinational companies headquartered in the West. Where international agendas commit to promote local content production and a culturally diverse information society, there is minimal research o...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In the last decade there has been a growing attention on the topic of political participation in the later life. Yet, there is still a lack of research on older people's participation in social movements and the meanings of their involvement. Within the current context of protests, particularly in the 15M-Indignad@s movement, the Iaioflautas appear...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Past research in using ICTs (Information and Communication Technologies) in interpersonal communication showed that age plays an important role. There is a general assumption that the elderly are left behind regarding the adoption and the use of ICTs. Furthermore, elders tend to use ICTs mainly for instrumental purposes and the use is rather non-so...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
By means of a qualitative approach I bring insights on the relationship older people (60+) have with mobile communication in a low income district of Lima (Peru). The case study I conducted in September 2013 included interviews and one focus group with 20 inhabitants of San Juan de Miraflores district. The user/non-user dichotomous classification t...
Data
Originally founded in the city of Barcelona in 2011, the Iaioflautas movement (www.iaioflautas.org) gathers elderly activist who wish to give voice to their demands in a non-institutional organization in adhesion to the wider 15M social movement. Although there has been some research lately on the political participation of senior citizens, no stud...
Poster
Full-text available
In the last decade there has been a growing attention on the topic of civic engagement in the later life. Particularly, research on political participation of senior citizens is in an initial stage. Scholars hold different positions regarding the effect of age on political activity. However, there is still a lack of research on older people’s parti...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Age shapes both communication practices and mediated communication practices, as personal interests evolve as we grow old [1]. Yet the most pervasive information and communication technology among all age groups is mobile telephony worldwide [2]. However, in low-income sectors mobiles use is shaped by budgetary restrictions [3]: For instance the te...
Article
Full-text available
The 20th century’s epistemological turn in social sciences (Denzin & Lincoln, 1994; Punch, 2013) acknowledged the importance of qualitative research methods. The need for this turn was also pointed out by Habermas (1979), who noticed that the way data was collected in social sciences affected the analysis and data interpretation. Research gained a...
Article
Full-text available
(Full text: http://journalofcommunication.ro/32/fernandez-ardevol_ivan.pdf) We analyze the relationships seniors have with mobile communications in two different European contexts, Romania and Catalonia. By means of a qualitative approach, we describe the ways older individuals incorporate mobile phones in everyday life communication practices, and...
Article
Full-text available
Title: Older people and mobile telephony: the role of voice and texts in Montevideo Abstract: There is still lot to learn about the way mobile communication is adopted, or rejected, by older people. How do older people use mobile telephony? What are the motivations for rejecting mobile telephony, if any? We discuss the results of a qualitative case...
Article
In this article I discuss the phenomenon of deliberated missed calls and their intentional use by senior mobile phone users in Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain). Deliberate missed calls (DMC) are made with the intention that the receiver is not to answer them. Although this multiregional and multicultural practice is described in different countries, no...
Article
The impact of information and communication technology is not limited to the sector in which it is produced, but rather it spreads to all sectors of production and consumption. This is also valid for mobile telephony.
Technical Report
Full-text available
This paper describes preliminary results of a qualitative case study on mobile communication conducted in an elders’ retire ment home in Toronto (Ontario, Canada) in May 2012. This is part of an international research project on the relationship between mobile communications and older people. Secondary data at a Canadian level contextualizes the ca...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This paper continues the series of case studies on mobile communication and older people in different cities. We present here the preliminary results of a case study of Montevideo (Uruguay), conducted in June 2012. With ages ranging between 64 and 75 years old, all the participants lived in their own homes in the metropolitan area of Montevideo. Re...
Chapter
This in-depth case study provides insights into the value and impacts of mobile communication in rural areas, particularly among impoverished communities. In the rural areas of Puno, Peru, mobile phone usage was tracked among producers, traders, veterinary technicians, and young students. Prepaid subscription was the most common payment option, and...
Article
Age is a factor that has a bearing on the adoption and use of mobile telephony. Most of the available evidence in the field focuses on teenagers and young adults. To make up for the lack of research on older people, we explore the distinctive characteristics of mobile phone use among senior citizens. Our research is set in Barcelona and its metropo...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This paper introduces a qualitative case study on mobile communication among the older population (60+ ears old) conducted in Great Los Angeles (CA, USA) in autumn2011. Methodology, fieldwork and preliminary results are discussed. Before, country-level data is presented to better understand the specific characteristics of the studied individuals. T...
Article
Full-text available
We characterize market traders at two rural fairs in Puno, Peru, based on quantitative and qualitative data gathered in 2008, to gain insight into types of traders and the information needs that inºuence the degree to which they use mobile phones to make decisions regarding which weekly fairs to attend. Using variables such as origin, type of goods...
Article
Full-text available
We study the determining factors of science-based cooperation in the case of small and micro firms. In this research, we propose an analytical framework based on the resource-based view of the firm and we identify a set of organisational characteristics, which we classify as internal, external and structural factors. Each factor can be linked to at...
Chapter
Este libro pretende analiza el impacto de la telefonía móvil en el desarrollo social y económico de América Latina en la última década. En el estudio, en el que han colaborado reconocidos especialistas, se presentan los resultados obtenidos en una amplia investigación que abarca análisis regionales y casos de estudio en Argentina, Brasil, Chile y P...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
By means of a case study we explore how the residents of a retirement home use mobile telephony. This is part of wider research on mobile communication among the elderly population in the metropolitan area of Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain). A qualitative approach, based on semi-structured interviews, allows the exploration of social perceptions, repr...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We explore the distinctive characteristics of mobile telephone use among the elderly population. We analyze the last available European country-level data on individual use of mobile telephony and advanced mobile services. Results are interpreted in the light of the available knowledge in the field. As a result, we are able to propose an analytical...
Book
** Premi Mercè Sala a la millor tesi doctoral, any 2009 ** L’objectiu de la recerca és analitzar alguns dels factors que afavoreixen la competitivitat de les petites i les micro empreses; en concret, l’obtenció de competitivitat a través de la relació entre el sistema universitari i de recerca i el teixit productiu. El marc teòric en què se situa...
Article
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An entrepreneurial environment is conformed by factors that play a favourable role in the development of entrepreneurship. Economic literature on innovative milieus identifies those elements that are decisive in improving the competitive performance of companies. We analysed whether Barcelona Activa's specific environment promotes the development o...
Book
Wireless networks are the fastest growing communications technology in history. Are mobile phones expressions of identity, fashionable gadgets, tools for life--or all of the above? Mobile Communication and Society looks at how the possibility of multimodal communication from anywhere to anywhere at any time affects everyday life at home, at work, a...

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Projects (7)
Archived project
This project presents an integrative model about the use of those services that have been specifically designed to support entrepreneurial initiative. By contrast with conventional perspectives from the entrepreneurship field, mainly drawn from a resource-based view, we propose a two-fold approach to explain the utilization of services that are oriented to new business creation: by considering the role of resources within the start-up’s reach (internal and external); by incorporating a behavioral and decision-making approach. On the basis of the suggested decision-making framework, a multi-stage decision model is developed and tested by means of a representative sample of entrepreneurs linked to a local development agency. The results show that the adoption and use of support services for new business creation is a complex and reflexive process, triggered by the entrepreneur’s internal forces. The entrepreneur searches for information throughout the process and, with assistance from internal teams and external networks, evaluates the choices of business-support services. Our findings offer relevant implications and recommendations for business incubators and institutions.
Project
To explore possible processes of displacement of traditional dominant media by innovative communication practices within the older audience in six countries (Austria, Canada, Israel, the Netherlands, Romania, and Spain). During five years the same group of internet users aged 60 and up is followed during three waves (2016, 2018 and 2020). Finland will join the project for waves 2 and 3.