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October 26-27, 2006
Hard-Wiring Inclusion
Online workshops Fall 2005.

A Three-Way Dance: The Global Public Good and Accessibility in Information Technologies

By Deborah Stienstra, James Watzke and Gary E. Birch

Complete article:
  • A Three Way Dance (HTML)
  • A Three Way Dance (PDF)


When we recognize the development and use of information technologies as an emerging global public good, we can move away from the stark dualisms of profit versus human rights, market share versus accessibility, and competition versus inclusion, to an understanding of how both public and private interests are at play in the development of this global public good. Governments, industry, and disability advocacy organizations are all involved in the construction of this public good in a complex three-way dance. We argue that in the context of this three-way dance it is possible to create a common ground between disability advocacy organizations and the IT industry by developing tools that address the tensions that arise from their differing motivating forces. Specifically, we argue that three sets of tools - regulation, developing ease of use products and standards, and using education to increase the market strength of people with disabilities as consumers - can change the relationships between these two communities of interest in ways that will benefit each.

Page modified: October 22 2007 08:27:02