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Accessibility 2.0: People, Policies and Processes

This page contains access to a paper on "Accessibility 2.0: People, Policies and Processes" which was accepted for the International Cross-Disciplinary Workshop on Web Accessibility. This workshop had the theme "Web 2.0 and the Semantic Web: Hindrance or Opportunity?" and was held in Banff, Canada on 7-8th May 2007.

The paper was presented by Brian Kelly on Tuesday, 8th May 2007.


This paper is available from Opus, the University of Bath institutional repository.

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Note that this paper is also available on the Scribd repository service.

Accompanying Presentation
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The slides are also available on Slideshare and embedded below:


Citation Details

Accessibility 2.0: People, Policies and Processes, Kelly, B., Sloan, D., Brown, S., Seale, J, Petrie, H., Lauke, P. and Ball, S. WWW 2007 Banff, Canada, 7-11 May 2007.
<> (PDF format). Also available at <> (multiple formats).

Author Details

The co-authors of this paper are:

  • Brian Kelly, UKOLN, University of Bath, UK. ORCID: 0000-0001-5875-8744
  • Helen Petrie, University of York, UK.
  • David Sloan, University of Dundee, UK. ORCID: 0000-0002-8302-7879
  • Patrick Lauke, University of Salford, UK. ORCID: 0000-0002-1807-381X
  • Stephen Brown, De Montfort University, UK. ORCID: 0000-0001-7064-3851
  • Simon Ball, JISC TechDis, Higher Education Academy, UK.
  • Jane Seale, University of Southampton, UK.

Brian Kelly was the lead author. You can view Brian's Google+ page. His email address is currently


The workof the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) is described in a set of technical guidelines designed to maximise accessibility to digital resources. Further activities continue to focus on technical developments, with current discussions exploring the potential merits of use of Semantic Web and Web 2.0 approaches. In this paper we argue that the focus on technologies can be counter-productive. Rather than seeking to enhance accessibility through technical innovations, the authors argue that the priority should be for a user-focussed approach, which embeds best practices through the development of achievable policies and processes and which includes all stakeholders in the process of maximising accessibility.

The paper reviews previous work in this area and summarises criticisms of WAI's approach. The paper further develops a tangram model which describes a pluralistic, as opposed to a universal, approach to Web accessibility, which encourages creativity and diversity in developing accessible services. Such diversity will need to reflect the context of usage, including the aims of a service (informational, educational, cultural, etc.), the users' and the services providers' environment.

The paper describes a stakeholder approach to embedding best practices, which recognises that organisations will encounter difficulties in developing sustainable approaches by addressing only the needs of the end user and the Web developer. The paper describes work which has informed the ideas in this paper and plans for further work, including an approach to advocacy and education which coins the "Accessibility 2.0" term to describe a renewed approach to accessibility, which builds on previous work but prioritises the importance of the user. The paper concludes by describing the implications of the ideas described in this paper for WAI and for accessibility practitioner stakeholders.

Categories and Subject Descriptors
H.5.2 [User Interfaces - Evaluation/methodology];
K.4.2 [Social Issues - Assistive technologies for persons with disabilities]

General Terms
Measurement, Documentation, Human Factors, Standardization, Legal Aspects, Verification.

Web accessibility, people with disabilities, WAI, WCAG, guidelines, methodologies, contextual design.

Citations Of The Paper

On 13 November 2011 57 citations was found for this paper using Google Scholar


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