Development of guidelines for standards around ICT for age-friendly communities

Why do we need a guideline to develop standards around ICT for age-friendly communities? The standardisation process has become an important part of ICT product and service development, with potentially a great impact on everyday life and improving the way we communicate and live. ICT products and services are all around us but they often seem to be inaccessible to older people whom, as much as younger people, are their major users.

The PROGRESSIVE project is producing guidelines for age-friendly approaches to standards and the standardization process in a way that will raise awareness, change ways of thinking and set in place the pre-conditions for change that will foster greater inclusion and co-production.

The activity is oriented towards providing a crucial link to the wider European and international agenda that is concerned with Active and Healthy Ageing (AHA) and the empowerment and inclusion of older people. With this approach we will be able to create more accessible, usable and interoperable products and services for the benefit of all.

To reach this goal and to provide a valid guideline for age-friendly standards development it is necessary to:

* Understand which are the practical barriers that may be thwarting progress towards this laudable objective.

* Identify the most relevant standards that relate to accessibility and disability. It is clear that these fields influence not only older people but can be applied to different kinds of people (e.g. younger people with a specific disability).

* Coach professionals (and others) and encourag them to understand the ethical imperatives and the practical benefits that follow from an asset based approach to ageing and older people.

* Create guidelines which will help stakeholders and providers to create more accessible, usable and interoperable products and services.

This new approach in standards development will encourage designs and approaches for products and services that recognize older people as an important part of the new economy.


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