Women Personal Safety Device

Opportunity Statement

• Decreasing physical vulnerability for women when they are outside.

Brief Overview

In many situations women feel unsafe when they are traveling outside their home. The fact of having to be vigilant and careful at all times is very taxing on their mental well-being. This feeling of anxiety prevents women from leaving their homes and feeling confident outside by themselves. In addition to the direct consequences of the women suffering from this vulnerability, the effects of this issue can affect many different stakeholders such as the bars, restaurants and other businesses that lose customers or can affect ridesharing services by increasing their usage.

UC Berkeley is consistently listed as one of the least safe university campuses in the country. The current measures that women can use to reduce their vulnerability when being outside simply include moving with ridesharing services, personal defense devices or training and campus night safety escorts or transportation services. However, many of these measures are simply measures to mitigate the feeling of vulnerability. Therefore, as a Human Centered Design Project, I am working on developing the solution for women safety in Berkeley.

Currently, we are working on identifying the need of the product and developing a User Research Plan and Technical Memo. 20 women on Berkeley Campus were interviewed to identify the need of the product and area of concentration.

Result from the interview conducted on campus:

Brief Overview

SOCIAL:
• Fear of being attacked/approached by a stranger with bad intentions.
• Robbed/assaulted/drugged/kidnapped (physical).
• Feeling watched online or in person.
• Using a night time walking service is stigmatized.

TECHNOLOGICAL:
• Portable.
• Not heavy, easy to carry.
• Easily accessible at a moment’s notice.

ECONOMIC:
• Calling Ubers/Lyfts all the time is expensive to be using regularly/for small distances (even ubers are not 100% safe).
• Bear watch services have limited resources.
• Losing valuable items (Technology, Money).
• Late night working Businesses.

IMPORTANT STAKEHOLDERS:
• Women.
• Friends and family of affected women.
• Ride sharing companies.
• Businesses (retail, restaurants, bars, etc).
• Night safety services.

Get in Touch

shakshi_himmatramka@berkeley.edu

+1 (510) 990 1432