The launch of a new podcast…
The Tavistock Institute is engaged in several research projects which look at digital inclusion; this is the practice of ensuring that groups and individuals who are unable to access digital services and devices are able to do so. The essential value of addressing digital inclusion has become apparent during the pandemic, as the day-to-day activities we take for granted were no longer available in their physical form, from education to non-essential shopping, to speaking with family and friends.
The Tavistock Institute is one of the partners working on the Medici project which has created an interactive map of good practice interventions tackling digital exclusion in Europe. To support users of this map, a Knowledge Community has been established which provides resources such as guidance on conducting interventions, webinars and videos.
As part of this offer, we have created a podcast that looks at digital inclusion for five groups that are vulnerable to digital exclusion: disadvantaged young people; migrants; people with disabilities; elderly people; and unemployed people.
We recently launched our second episode which looks at interventions for disadvantaged young people. Young people have not traditionally been targeted for digital inclusion interventions, due to the perception that young people are ‘digital natives’; this view holds that as young people have grown up with technology, they have learned to use it by osmosis and are less in need of support in using ICTs (Information and Communication Technologies).
However, this view excludes young people who do not have access to devices and internet connectivity in their homes. Research has found that digital exclusion goes hand in hand with other forms of disadvantage, such as low family income, unemployment and mental health status (Helsper, 2007; Cullen et al., 2015).
There are a number of initiatives in the Medici catalogue which seek to ensure that disadvantaged young people are able to access digital devices and technology to increase their employability, learning opportunities and/or social inclusion. In this episode of Digital Stories, we speak to Margaret Sheehy and Jon Pratty who work at MSL, a Hastings-based production company who worked on one such initiative.
MSL operates in the arts and heritage sector and works within several disciplines including theatre, digital technology and community learning. Margaret is a theatre director, writer and producer with an interest in community-focused projects and Jon Pratty is journalist, editor, digital publisher and creative producer whose work spans the commercial and cultural sectors.