Project Director: Salimah LaForce (GT).
Task leaders: Salimah LaForce (GT); Helena Mitchell, Ph.D (GT).
This dissemination project focuses on government, industry, and disability stakeholders to raise awareness and champion the adoption of accessible solutions for current and future wirelessly connected technologies.
The Wireless RERC's dissemination project provides substantive input to regulatory proceedings that will help reduce barriers and increase methods for accelerating the development and deployment of accessible wireless products and services. The Policy Initiatives project also encompasses stakeholder outreach and engagement. Via the Technology and Disability Policy Highlights newsletter, the Wireless RERC website, and our social media outlets, research and development findings have been disseminated to policymakers, federal agencies, advocacy organizations, designers, wireless technology developers, manufacturers, and service providers. By increasing industry and policy stakeholders' understanding of user expectations and experiences concerning current and emerging wireless technologies and services, end-user adoption and meaningful use is the outcome.
In consultation with disability community stakeholders and the research and Wireless RERC development teams, summations of user feedback on possible technical solutions have facilitated policy discussions and informed filings and ex parte presentations before regulators. As a result, 77 empirically supported federal regulatory filings have been submitted, Wireless RERC research and recommendations have been cited within the resultant rulemakings more than 200 times.
The Policy Initiatives project is responsible for the TDPH newsletter, maintaining the Wireless RERC online newsroom, managing social media presence, and the development and production of workshops and an annual State of Technology event. These efforts share knowledge about technical, policy, and practice solutions for accessible wireless technologies and services to facilitate dialog amongst stakeholders, provide specific design elements and user needs feedback, and assist in reconciling differences on the optimal delivery of accessible wireless technologies and services. Engaging existing partnerships and networks and cultivating new ones, the Wireless RERC maximizes communication efforts' reach and impact on policy, practice, and the research community.
State of Technology (SoT) Forum 2021
The Wireless RERC will hold the 2021 Virtual State of Technology (SOT) Forum on March 23-24, 2021. Attendees will help chart the next generation of wireless/connected technology opportunities to enhance the lives of people with disabilities. The Forum is planned as an invitation-only event featuring a lively, informed, and diverse group of attendees representing the research community, people with disabilities, industry, technologists, advocates, policymakers, and disability service providers.
The Forum will focus on the key themes: Include, Innovate, and Transform. These three cross-cutting elements have been chosen as particularly characteristic of the rapidly advancing, technology-driven field over the last 21 years. The Forum will examine the evolving nature and capacities of wireless technologies and identify opportunities to meet a range of community needs for access, equity, and inclusion. We are especially interested in identifying change-making mechanisms in research, development, policy, and capacity building that advance inclusion, innovation, and transformation.