Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


Being part of it: European research for an inclusive information society

Funded under: FP7-ICT


Digital technologies are now an essential part of daily life. We use them at work, in day-to-day relationships, in dealing with public services, and a lot more besides. They touch our lives in ways which we are oft en unaware of or don't even think about. Do you feel comfortable with these technologies, or do you feel you're getting left behind?
If so you are not alone. Studies show there are wide variations across Europe in how people use new information and communication technologies (ICT):
- About 74 million Europeans with low levels of education do not use the internet.
- Only around 1 in 3 of the unemployed use the internet on a regular basis.
- In remote and rural areas, ab'out 35% of the population do not use ICT.
- Only 13% of people aged over 65 are internet users, while the average in Europe is 51%.
Overall, around a third of Europeans do not receive the benefits of new technologies because they are disadvantaged in some way.
This is a big problem for Europe. Without direct action there is a real risk that ICT could create new barriers within society, a phenomenon which policy-makers call 'digital exclusion'. By not fully exploiting ICT, we in Europe would also lose out on opportunities to create new jobs and economic prosperity.

Additional information

Authors: No author stated, European Commission, DG Research, Brussels (BE)
Bibliographic Reference: Luxembourg, Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 2008. 33 pp, free of charge
Availability: (Catalogue Number: KK-30-08-305-EN-C)
ISBN: ISBN: 978-92-79-08587-1
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