Accessible Smart Cities: Ensuring urban equality through technologies for all

July 4, 2023 11:14 pm Published by

A symbol of WiFi surrounded by icons of laptop, airplane, computer etc

Accessibility is an internationally recognized human right and a precondition for inclusion and participation in society. In the present context of rapid urbanization, the proliferation of accessibility barriers has become a pressing concern, further exacerbating social exclusion and deepening inequalities within urban communities.

We joined the UN-Habitat and the Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies (G3ict) and speakers from the Government of France, Access Living and the City of Istanbul to discuss how smart cities can become accessible, during the recent Conference of State Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (COSP).

“Local authorities and city officials have a very important role to play in ensuring that digital accessibility is done correctly. Commitments to accessibility must permeate all aspects of city management – from internally promoting national and local standards, to requiring accessibility in procurement, to ensuring the effective participation of a broad range of representatives from the community of persons with disabilities at all stages of city measures, from design to roll-out,” reads the UNHABITAT.

Regional, national and local governments need to collaborate with persons with disabilities, older persons and their representative organisations in achieving accessible and inclusive urban development.

The discussion was a partnership between UN-Habitat, the World Blind Union, G3ict, the Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs, and IAAP, this side event will discuss the implementation of Smart City technologies with and for persons with disabilities to ensure accessibility for all. Watch the meeting here:

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This post was written by Fridah Mlemwa