Designing for informal co-production in mental healthcare: an innovative psychiatry program and the strategies from a territorial lab


  • Federico De Luca
  • Daniela Sangiorgi



co-production, service design, informal care, mental health


This paper reflects on the process of co-producing mental health with informal actors, patients, health and social providers. In particular, this research examines the potential of territorial laboratories as places of experimentation for co-producing services for recovery. The Case study examined is the Brescia Recovery Co-Lab in Italy, developed with the aim to facilitate territorial experimentation of co-produced mental health and wellbeing services and initiatives with users, family members, local actors and service providers at the community level. Through a thematic analysis of the interviews, five main factors emerged that influence the co-production of mental health with informal resources: Time, Value, Participation, Co-design and Scale. The core of these factors concerns the experimentation with practices outside the traditional organisational logics typical of territorial laboratories, structures that favour dynamic co-production in mental health.