Disabling communications? A capabilities perspective on media access, social inclusion and communication policy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Digital information and communication technologies (ICTs) feature prominently in programmes to promote social inclusion and to implement extensive reform in public service provision across Europe. The transition to an all-digital communications environment and the digital ‘switchover' of public services bring to the fore a need to rethink access as a goal of public policy. This paper probes patterns of internet diffusion among disabled people using capabilities framework and resource-based models of access. The analysis highlights the multi-dimensional character of media access capability as the space to evaluate policies for social inclusion; the relational character of disability as a phenomenon of the interface between personal circumstances and structural disadvantage; a capability failure resulting from a gap in policy commitment to promote universal access for disabled people and other excluded groups; and a requirement for policies sensitive to the need for additional resources to equalize the media access capabilities of these individuals.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)571-587
Number of pages17
JournalMedia Culture & Society
Volume34
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2012

Keywords

  • capabilities
  • communications policy
  • disability
  • e-inclusion
  • media access
  • social exclusion

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