16 November: Using Artificial Intelligence to enhance accessibility - Opportunities and risks of emerging technologies for persons with disabilities

16 November 2018

On 16 November, the European Disability Forum (EDF) and Österreichischer Behindertenrat will host and event on “Using Artificial Intelligence to enhance accessibility - Opportunities and risks of emerging technologies for persons with disabilities”.

The event will fully explore the potential of emerging technologies and will focus on technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and aims to debate and promote a universal design approach in their development, supporting enhanced accessibility for persons with disabilities. The event will be sponsored by Microsoft, Facebook, Google, Amazon, My Handicap and Essl Foundation. It will be a unique opportunity for delegates and experts of the European disability movement to exchange their views with major technological companies, get to know their AI-based solutions and brainstorm together about the future of accessibility.

The event is divided in three panels. The first one will focus on Artificial Intelligence and leading technology companies will have the opportunity to explain their position and initiatives on this topic. The second panel will focus on showcasing solutions and best practices in accessibility for people with disabilities. Finally, the third panel will open up the discussion among all the participants: persons with disabilities, ICT experts and companies’ representatives will brainstorm together about the future of accessibility.

event poster

Goals of the event

  • Collect input towards a new report on emerging technologies describing the opportunities, challenges and risks that these new technologies may entail for persons with disabilities, in which several ICT players have contributed with interviews.

  • Supporting organisations of persons with disabilities (DPOs) in being aware of the main technology trends and how these can affect the lives of persons with disabilities.

  • Develop understanding of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Internet of Things, Virtual Reality, Smart Homes, etc. and how these emerging technologies can be made accessible and enhance accessibility for persons with disabilities.

  • To showcase worth-knowing solutions and practices that could be picked up by OPDs and persons with disabilities, and ICT companies and organisations to receive feedback from persons with disabilities on those solutions and practices.

  • To facilitate networking between OPDs and ICT companies and organisations.

Draft Programme

Click here to download it

14:30 – 14:45 Welcome remarks


Gabriele SPRENGSEIS, Chief Executive of the Austrian Disability Council

14:45 – 15:30 Setting the scene - Moderator: Michael FEMBEK, Essl Foundation

Adina BRAHA-HONCIUC (Ellis), Government Affairs Manager – Accessibility, Sustainability and Online safety, EU - Microsoft

Anna-Verena NAETHER, Public Policy and Government Relations Senior Analyst – Google

Monica DESAI, Public Policy Director, Facebook


15:30 – 16:15 Showcasing solutions - Moderator: Inmaculada PLACENCIA PORRERO, Senior Expert on Disability, DG EMPL - European Commission

Hector MINTO, Technology Evangelist, Accessibility, Microsoft

Constantin GISSLER, Manager EU Public Policy – Amazon

Wilfried KAINZ, Essl Foundation

Pilar ORERO, UAB & Marcel BOBELDIJK – EFHOH – EU projects on media accessibility


16:15 – 16:45 Coffee break

16:45 – 17:45 Opening of the discussion - Moderator: Alejandro MOLEDO, EDF Policy Coordinator

Klaus HOCKNER – member of the Commission High Level Group on Artificial Intelligence

Katherine PERRY – EDF-Google 2018 fellowship programme

Carine MARZIN – Accessibility Expert presenting the EDF report on Emerging Technologies


Roundtable discussions in groups

17:45 – 18:00 Conclusions and closing remarks

Reporting back from roundtable discussions - Humberto INSOLERA, EDF Executive Committee member

18.30 – 20.00 Buffet dinner

Please click here to register

Follow on Twitter with the #AIAccess hashtag

![Logos of the Austrian Presidency to the EU, organisers and sponsors][Logos of the Austrian Presidency to the EU, organisers and sponsors]

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