SiDE: Social Inclusion through the Digital Economy

SiDE is an interdisciplinary research project aimed at realising the potential for digital technologies to transform the lives of people who are socially excluded. Poor health, disability, family breakdown, poverty and unemployment are just some of the reasons why people of all ages may become marginalised in society. SiDE researchers are therefore working directly with these marginalised groups to understand their needs, and explore the potential for digital technologies and approaches to transform lives. The team will work with a group of 3000 volunteers from the Dundee and Newcastle areas, including people from a range of age groups and with a variety of disabilities. In the North East, a large panel of older people recruited and supported by “Years Ahead: the North East Regional Forum on Ageing”, which is a key partner in the Hub, will be involved.

The £12 million Hub is based at Newcastle University and is a key element of the EPSRC Digital Economy research programme. The Hub, in which the University of Dundee will also play a key role, will address four fields where digital technologies and the building of a truly inclusive digital economy could deliver major social benefits: Connected Home & Community, Accessibility, Inclusive Transport Services, and Creative Industries.

Date: Oct 2009 – Sept 2014
Funding: EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council) £10,422,667
Researchers: Paul Watson (PI).
Patrick Olivier, Atau Tanaka, Phil Blythe, Aad van Moorsel, Feng Li, Ranald Richardson, and Lynne Corner (CIs).
Thomas PloetzNils HammerlaOlga Pykhtina,  Anja ThiemeCas LadhaGavin WoodKarim LadhaDan Jackson, Abigail Durrant.

Collaborators: Vicki Hanson (University of Dundee).

See some photos from the Digital Economy Research Hub Launch at the British Library

See the SiDE project website.
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