Indicators for an accessible information society

Ministry of Transport and Communications
Publication date 19.12.2014 12.39
News item
(Photo: Rodeo)
(Photo: Rodeo)

A report published by the Ministry of Transport and Communications working group tasked with monitoring the accessibility of information society finds that, in the future, accessibility to services will not only be an issues of improving one's life but will also have an economic impact. The working group established 25 indicators for monitoring of accessibility and its development.

Accessibility to services has a significant effect on the daily lives of people, but also has great impact on the national economy. According to an assessment by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, in 2030 up to one-fourth of Finland's population will be made up of persons over the age of 65. Add to this the number of persons, who are physically disabled, the number of persons, who may have problems with accessibility, is quite large.

The Ministry of Transport and Communications published its first action plan for improving access to information society to all citizens in 2005. The work has continued without pause. The current monitoring programme for an accessible information society began in 2012 and will come to an end in 2015.

In 2012, as part of the programme, a working group was established to monitor accessibility to information services, and a sub-working group was tasked with specifying indicators to describe an accessible information society.

The working group proposes that the development of an accessible information society be monitored with a set of concrete indicators published annually. The working group has compiled a list of 25 indicators for monitoring accessibility. These indicators are easy to collect and together, as a monitoring entity, can form a sufficiently diverse picture of the development of accessibility and which points still need to be improved upon.

However, the working group states that the proposal for indicators is still incomplete. It is important that these indicators could be compared to those in international studies.

According to the working group, accessibility is an area that must in future receive more attention in both EU and national legislation. The now published report is a good foundation for further work.