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Development of a Gap Analysis and Roadmap to Meet the Technology Needs of People with Disability and Special Needs in OIC Member States

By: INIT
 Tuesday, October 30, 2018

In 2016, the INIT initiated a collaboration with UNESCO Chair in ICT for Development with the support of Prof. Tim Unwin, (Chairholder, UNESCO Chair on ICT4D) and developed a 5 -Year Concept Note for People with Disabilities. Realizing and acknowledging the INIT’s contribution in the area of ICTs, the UNESCO Chair joined hands with INIT under its program of ICT4D and the INIT entered into this collaboration as an official partner organization with UNESCO Chair in ICT for Development.

Under the above said collaborative initiative, the INIT launched research project titled ‘Development of a Gap Analysis and Roadmap to Meet the Technology Needs of People with Disability and Special Needs in OIC Member States’. The research project was as an impetus to the already developed 5-year concept note in 2016. Mr. David Banes a leading expert on assistive technologies and the person behind setting up the Mada Center for People with Disabilities in Doha, State of Qatar was also taken on board as project consultant.

The devised study is based upon the commitments enshrined in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with a Disability (UNCRPD) which would provide a framework within which detailed analysis of the role of ICT’s could be completed. The study is aimed at defining the elements of an accessibility infrastructure and review the availability of such elements within and across OIC member states, identifying which states are taking concrete steps to deliver elements of the infrastructure, and how that experience could support emerging services and products in other states.

The data collection tools were developed from June 2017 to September 2017, and the formal data collection and field research was initiated in October 2017 continuing till April 2018. The study is in the process of conducting a gap analysis of the current state of policy across five pilot OIC Member states namely Jordan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Qatar, and Tunisia. Policy, resources and initiatives that support the use of ICT by people with a disability in each of the following areas are being reviewed under the following areas:

 

Public Policy
Awareness and Communications
Advice and Assessment
Training and Professional development
Provision of Assistive Technologies
Technical Support Availability
e-Accessibility and Access to Digital Content
Research and Development
Innovation

 

The INIT Team comprising of Prof. Tim Unwin, Mr. David Banes, Mr. Tahir Naeem, Dr. Akber Gardezi and Mr. Mohammed Atiq ur Rehman is involved in the project. Field visits were conducted for a series of semi-structured individual/focus group interviews to assess the current capabilities of the identified stake holders from October 2017 to April 2018. A list of the stakeholders being consulted for instant study in different countries is given below:

 

Pakistan

Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications
Pakistan Telecommunications Authority
STEP NGO for the Disabled
RIPHAH Rehabilitation Center
Pakistan Disabled Foundation
Peshawar Paraplegic Center
Department of Social Welfare

Qatar

Ability Net
Qatar University
MADA Center
Qatar Center for Research in Computing
Qatar Foundation
Renad Center
Qatar Social and Cultural Club for the Blind

Jordan

Queen Rania Foundation
Queen Rania Teacher Training Academy
Al Hussain Society
Higher Council for Affairs of People with Disabilities
IDRAAK
Ministry of Education
Royal Scientific Society of Jordan
Jordan University of Science and Technology
USAID Funded Project

 


Malaysia

Ministry of Multimedia and Communications
Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission
Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation
BAKTI Malaysian Information Network on Disability
DIGI Telecom
MAXIS Telecom
Department of Social Welfare
UNIMAS Sarawak
Malaysian Association for the Blind

 

Tunisia

Arab Information and Communication Technologies Organization
Arab League Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization
Disability Representative from Presidential Palace
Secretary of State for Digital Commerce, Ministry of Communications
Former President Tunisian Telecom
UN Committee Representative for CRPD
Tunisian Deaf Association
Fédération des Associations Tunisiennes oeuvrant dans le Domaine du Handicap
Institut superieur de l'education specialise
Tunisian Blind School, Sousse

 



Keywords: Program