Expert Survey: Defining Accessible Smart Cities

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Survey Introduction


This survey is being conducted as part of a global initiative to define information and communication technology (ICT) accessibility as part of smart cities programs.  This survey does not examine the accessibility of the built environment, but rather the accessibility of technology in smart cities programs worldwide. This initiative is being led by G3ict and World Enabled, two non-profit organizations working to implement the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Support for this initiative has been provided by Microsoft.

Smart cities can use accessible technology to improve people’s lives and upgrade the capabilities of all citizens, including persons with disabilities and older persons.  ICT accessibility allows individuals with a range of disabilities and impairments to access information and other public services. This survey explores ways in which ICT accessibility is being integrated into smart city initiatives around the world. The focus of this survey and the overall project is the extent to which and how smart cities develop and deploy technology solutions that are accessible to and inclusive of all citizens, including persons with disabilities and older persons.  The focus is not on solutions designed only and specifically for persons with disabilities.


The results of this survey will be used in series of global smart city roundtables and to create resources that define accessible smart city concepts, policy recommendations, model policies, best-practices, and mechanisms for the governance, monitoring and enforcement of smart cities policies and programs.

Key Words:

For the purposes of this survey, we define some key concepts as follows:


Persons with Disabilities and Older Persons: Any person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. These limitations are in part shaped by environmental barriers that hinder a person’s full participation in society on an equal basis with others. Older persons can acquire such impairments as part of the aging process.

Information and Communications Technology (ICT): Information and communication technologies (ICT) encompass a wide range of hardware and software, devices and computers, formats and systems that enable communication through electronic means. This includes devices and systems used for the storage, processing and retrieval of electronic information, the array of devices and software used to retrieve this information, and those used to communicate in real-time with other people.

Accessibility: Accessibility indicates the extent to which products, systems, services, environments and facilities can be used by people with the widest range of characteristics and capabilities.

Assistive Technology: Assistive technology refers to hardware or software added to, connected to, or incorporated within, a system that increases accessibility for an individual by translating input or output into a more personally-relevant form.

Smart Cities: A smart city uses information and communication technologies (ICT) to enhance quality, performance and interactivity of urban services, to reduce costs and resource consumption, and to enable more effective interaction between citizens and government.


Contact:  If you have any questions about this survey, please write

Opt-in: You were selected to participate because of your experience with the topic.  Participation is voluntary.  Results will be kept anonymous.

Deadline:  Please take and submit this survey by Monday August 15, 2016.  Estimated time needed to complete the survey is 10 minutes.