Monthly Archives: November 2018

Nazmus Sakib and Devansh Saxena Publish Paper on “Confronting Autism in Bangladesh”

Nazmus Sakib and Devansh Saxena have recently published a peer-reviewed paper titled as “Confronting Autism in Urban Bangladesh: Unpacking Infrastructural and Cultural Challenges” in the EAI Endorsed Transactions on Pervasive Health and Technology. This research was a multidisciplinary collaboration between Georgia Institute of Technology, Marquette University, Purdue University, University of Toronto, Dhaka Medical College and Hospital, National Institute of Mental Health Bangladesh, Institute of Pediatric Neuro disorders and Autism Bangladesh. Following is the context of this paper in a nutshell.
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a critical problem worldwide; however, low and middle-income countries (LMICs) often suffer more from it due to the lack of contextual research and effective care infrastructure. Moreover, ASD in LMICs offers unique challenges as cultural misperceptions and social practices often impede effective care there. However, the recent growth in mobile phone adoption in many LMICs has created a timely opportunity for improving ASD care practices through digital means. We present qualitative findings on the challenges of designing mobile assistive technologies for ASD in Bangladesh. Our data reveal a set of technical, social, and cultural challenges with caregivers and care professionals for designing a meaningful technology for them. We show how those challenges are deeply rooted in the broader infrastructural and cultural tensions of the country. We also present embedded design implications to overcome these challenges.