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October 21, 2019: Alireza Darvishy nominated by ITU

Alireza Darvishy was selected as an expert and evaluator for the Evaluation Phase of the Regional Competition for Accessible Europe, organized and hosted by ITU.

The Competition is launched in the context of the second edition of “Accessible Europe: ICT 4 ALL”, the ITU-EC Forum for Europe. It provides the opportunity for innovators from across the private, public, non-profit and academic sectors to submit ideas for fostering the innovation ecosystem in ICT accessibility.

Winners of the competition will be announced at the upcoming ICT-4-ALL Forum, taking place in December 2019 in Malta.

September 13, 2017: “Accessibility by design” in the issue of Netzwoche

The 13th September issue features the topic of “accessibility by design”. Several experts were interviewed in this regard. Alireza Darvishy was interviewed about his research activities.

Interview with Alireza Darvishy (German only)

August 16, 2017: Brochure "Age-Appropriate Mobile Applications" available in English

The brochure "Altersgerechte mobile Applikationen", previously published in German, is now available in English as "Age-Appropriate Mobile Applications".

In cooperation with the Center for Gerontology from the University of Zurich we acquired basics and recommendations for the topic "Age-Appropriate Mobile Applications". The resulting brochure is aimed at people who commission, design, or develop mobile applications. The brochure should help to ensure that more and more mobile applications become barrierfree for older people.

Download Brochure (PDF, 430 kB)

January 16, 2017 (German only): Researcher of ZHAW receives UNESCO award

For round 20 years the researcher of ZHAW Alireza Darvishy advocates for it in numerous projects to enable people with disability access to information- and communication technologies. Now the head of ICT accessibility labs of ZHAW was awarded.

January 16, 2017 (German only): Interview with Alireza Darvishy for the Swisscom Sustainability Blog

Alireza Darvishy was interviewed on the subject of accessibility of digital media such as Swisscom TV.

December 12, 2016 (German only): The Unesco has awarded the ZHAW for communication projects for people with disability

Radio player to award

December 12, 2016 (German only): Unesco awards prize to an researcher of ZHAW

For round 20 years the researcher of ZHAW Alireza Darvishy advocates for it in numerous projects to enable people with disability access to information- and communication technologies. First time the prize is awarded to Switzerland.

November 3, 2016: ICT-Accessibility Lab as part of the delegation to Japan and Korea

Visit of a delegation consisting of several Swiss Universities of Applied Sciences

A delegation of Swiss Universities of Applied Sciences visited Japan and Korea in October 2016. Alireza Darvishy, head ICT-Accessibility Lab, was member of this delegation. The topic was "Healthy Ageing in the Age of New Technologies". Some research institutes and organizations were visited during this trip. The idea of the journey was to smooth the way for future cooperation between universities of applied sciences and companies in Switzerland, Japan and Korea.

The Delegation of Universities of Applied Sciences at the Swiss Embassy in Tokyo

Alireza Darvishy with Swiss Ambassador in Tokyo

August 25, 2016 (German only): Brochure "Altersgerechte mobile Applikationen" published

Das ICT-Accessibility Lab der ZHAW School of Engineering hat in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Zentrum für Gerontologie der Universität Zürich Grundlagen und Empfehlungen zum Thema "Altersgerechte mobile Applikationen" erarbeitet. Die Erkenntnisse sind in einer Broschüre zusammengefasst. Diese dient Auftraggebern sowie Entwicklern selbst als Leitfaden.

Den Fahrplan abrufen, das Zugbillett lösen oder mit dem Enkel chatten – zunehmend nutzen auch ältere Menschen ein Smartphone oder einen Tablet-Computer. Die barrierefreie Nutzung einer mobilen Anwendung setzt aber voraus, dass die besonderen Bedürfnisse älterer Menschen bei der Entwicklung von Applikationen schon frühzeitig miteinbezogen werden. Das ICT-Accessibility Lab der ZHAW School of Engineering hat deshalb zusammen mit dem Zentrum für Gerontologie der Universität Zürich die Bedürfnisse und Anforderungen der Generation 65plus an mobile Applikationen untersucht. Die daraus entstandene Broschüre soll dazu beitragen, dass im heutigen Alltag von Seniorinnen und Senioren nicht nur Wohn- und Aussenräume, sondern auch virtuelle Räume und mobile Anwendungen barrierefrei gestaltet werden.

Aufgeteilt in zehn Bereiche skizziert die Broschüre altersbedingte Einschränkungen, mit denen die Usergruppe 65plus häufig konfrontiert ist. Im Zentrum stehen konkrete Empfehlungen in Form von Prinzipien und Checklisten. Da das Smartphone und auch das Tablet kleiner sind als der herkömmliche Computer, ist es beispielsweise umso wichtiger, dass die Darstellungen innerhalb einer Applikation nicht überfüllt und die Handhabung nicht allzu kompliziert ist. Mobile Endgeräte werden an verschiedensten Orten und unterwegs eingesetzt und müssen daher anderen Gegebenheiten standhalten als die Arbeit am Computer mit einem grossen Bildschirm in den heimischen vier Wänden.

Personen, die Applikationen in Auftrag geben oder selber solche konzipieren sowie entwickeln, sollen auf diese Weise für das Thema sensibilisiert werden. Wenn mobile Applikationen wegen der altersbedingten Einschränkungen oder wegen der fehlenden Benutzerfreundlichkeit nicht oder nur teilweise zugänglich sind, tendieren ältere Menschen erwiesenermassen eher dazu, auf die betreffende Applikation zu verzichten. Es ist daher auch im Interesse von Anbieterinnen und Anbieter von Applikationen, auf die Erwartungen und Bedürfnisse der älteren Generation aktiv einzugehen.

Brochure download (PDF, 430 kB)

March 23, 2016: Paper for ICCHP Conference accepted

The ICT-Accessibility Lab has submitted a paper for the 15th International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs (ICCHP). It was accepted as a full paper. ICCHP is a renowned biannual conference in the area of ICT-Accessibility. For further information see

January 5, 2016: CTI-Projekt: From Emergency Watch to Personal Safty System

The ICT-Accessibility Lab from the focus area Human Information Interaction, InIT and Limmex start the CTI project MOSSEW in January 2016. Since long the watch from Limmex is well known as emergency watch for elderly people. The goal of this project is to further develop the emergency watch to a personal safty watch which offers an optimal solution for persons with demanding safty needs. This persons are not only elderly single living people and their relatieves but also individual sportsmen and solo traveling women or parents with their children.

January 5, 2016: UNESCO invites accessibility expert as speaker to the ICTA

The fifth International Conference on ICT & Accessibility (ICTA) was held from December 21-23, 2015 in Marrakech, Morocco. The conference explores several areas relating to ICT and education with a particular focus on Technology Enhanced Education for people with disabilities. Submitted papers propose new approaches and original tools, assess solutions, report experiences, review the state of the arts, etc. A wide range of perspectives, spanning academia, civil society, commerce, and industry and many issues across the full design-accessibility spectrum are addressed.

Alireza Darvishy, head of ICT-Accessibility Lab at InIT, was invited by UNESCO to address the a session entitled "From Exclusion to Empowerment - Way Ahead in the MENA Region". In his presentation he introduced actions for the implementation of the UNESCO New Delhi Declaration. A. Darvishy also had the opportunity to meet Dr. Indrajit Banarjee, head of UNESCO's "Information Section", with whom he had constructive discussion relating to the PAVE project from the ICT-Accessibility Lab. Accessibility is an important topic globally, but particularly in Arabian and Northafrican countries where there is much activity in doctoral theses and research projects. The conference facilitated the development of new relationships which offer the possibility to engage in collaborative projects with Arabic countries.

Group Photo of the Participants (A. Darvishy: sitting in the middle left)

Morrocan Minister of Education with A. Darvishy

July 23, 2014: International Award for ZHAW's Computer Science Project

At the ICT Accessibility Lab of the ZHAW School of Engineering, Luchin Doblies and David Stolz created a web tools that makes existing PDF documents accessible. Both computer science graduates won the international competition SS12 with their newly developed software.

Detailed view of media release

Award presentation at ICCHP 2014 in Paris

July 4, 2014: ICT Accessibility Lab: Expert at WHO in Geneva

The first "Global Cooperation on Assistive Health Technology" conference was held by WHO in Geneva on July 3 and 4. ICT Accessibility Lab was invited as an expert.

Global Cooperation on Assistive Health Technology

The WHO meeting on Global Cooperation on Assistive Technology took place on July 3 and 4, 2014 with more than 80 world organizations in the areas of health, assistive technologies, and other stakeholders at the headquarters of WHO in Geneva. It focused on the Global Cooperation on Assistive Technology/GATE. Alireza Darvishy held a presentation and introduced the ICT Accessibility Lab.

The following areas were discussed:

  1. Setting a research agenda
  2. Developing a global survey to map the current scenario
  3. Establishing connections with the medical/health products, efforts toward Universal Health Coverage, and development objectives
  4. Providing support to implement Article 32 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)
  5. Improving access to high-quality, affordable assistive technology
  6. Organizing an Evidence Summit in 2015
  7. Organizing a Global Summit or World Congress in 2016
  8. Mobilizing resources to develop GATE