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Reports

"National Tourist Organisations in Europe: Online Accessibility Benchmarking Report, 2011"

In 2011 ENAT made the first survey of the accessibility of 39 European National Tourist Organisations' websites. "Web accessibility" refers to the design and technical features of websites that determine whether people with physical or sensory impairments can actually read and use the site. A second survey has examined whether these websites provide accessibility information for disabled visitors, seniors and others with particular access requirements - and if so, what kinds of information they offer.

A slide presentation showing some of the survey results can be downloaded from the following link:

ENAT - NTOs Online Accessibility Benchmarking Report 2011

 


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30/12/2009 The Semiotics of Accessibility and the Cultural Construction of Disability

This paper draws on the observations of an international college student with an upper socio-economic background from Kenya who, prior to graduate work in the United States, had almost no contact with people with physical disabilities. The paper explores the construction of accessibility and disability on a college campus as viewed from a semiotic perspective through a research project that was conducted with a student with physical disabilities who used a motorized wheel chair. The paper contrasts an initial reaction to the freedom of accessibility the person with disability appears to have in the United States with the reality of a case study of a wheel-chair confined student. The commentary considers how signs of accessibility (such as the ramp sign) operate at three levels: (1) the iconic (signifying access or a way in/out); (2) indexical (as a marker of a society accessible by all citizens, even those with disabilities); and (3) symbolic (as a representation of freedom of movement, convenience, and inclusion). At this third symbolic level, the paper suggests that the ramp, when inconveniently though legally located, represents confinement, inconvenience, restriction of freedom, and a sense of censored access. The paper also examines ways that a person can be "dis-abled" by a culture through denial of a person's abilities or "enabled" and empowered.  

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