Participant perspectives of an online co-design process to develop a mental health and wellbeing platform for primary producers


Objective: To explore participant experiences of an online co-design process to develop a web-based preventative mental health and well-being intervention targeting primary producers in rural Australia

Setting: Rural Victoria, Australia

Participants: Participants from a primary producer background, including horticulture, fisheries, animal cultivation and farm consultancy, were eligible for the study if they had participated in both the co-design and beta testing processes for a primary producer platform.

Design: A qualitative study using semi-structured phone-based interviews was undertaken. A reflexive inductive approach to data analysis was employed to develop themes.

Results: Eleven participants were interviewed, with an average age of 51 years, of which 7 were female. Five main themes were developed. These included: (1) participant diversity, (2) impact of online delivery on co-design participation, (3) experiences of the co-design process, (4) maintaining a shared vision and goals and (5) acting on the co-design recommendations. Use of online methods was a clear enabler to engage participants who were geographically dispersed and offers an alternative to more conventional approaches to co-design using face-to-face methods. Some aspects of participant engagement may need a greater focus when conducted online compared with face-to-face.

Conclusion: Using an online co-design method to develop a preventative mental health and well-being web-based platform for primary producers was novel. Findings address a gap in the literature around the experience of participants engaging in a co-design process and identify opportunities to improve participant engagement and experience with the online format.

Binder, M., Beks, H., Versace, V., Macdonald, J., McKay, C., Cunningham, S., Wall, G., Barnes, K., Cornell, S., Cock, M., Kennedy, A., Namara, K Mc.2022Participant perspectives of an online co-design process to develop a prevention-focused mental health and well-being platform for primary producersThe Australian Journal of Rural Health Go to page