The principle of ‘working with, not on’ people with disabilities is widely espoused within inclusive research, yet historically such opportunities have not been fully realized. This paper speaks from the perspective of users of health, rehabilitation, assistive technology services, and the academics with whom they collaborate. We draw on Australia’s Disability Inclusive Research Principles to reflect on the practice of inclusive research across the areas of assistive technology policy, digital information, and health access, as well as the co-design of allied health resources. We consider and provide examples of how power and knowledge play out in health and rehabilitation, the developing discourse around consumer co-design and co-production, and the challenges of enacting inclusive research. This paper is about shared power in the mechanisms of research production and our journeys towards it. Engaging in inclusive research has enabled us to assume roles beyond the binary of the ‘researcher’ and the ‘researched’. We conclude by proposing an adaptation of the ladder of participation for inclusive research.
- assistive technology
- research methods