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Building an Inclusive Future: Empowering Through Assistive Technologies

Gerda Sula – Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Pedagogy and Psychology, University of Tirana, Albania [ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7977-3249]

This chapter explores the pivotal role of assistive technologies in advancing empowerment and inclusion for individuals with disabilities. With over 1.3 billion people globally living with disabilities, this chapter emphasizesthe urgency of breaking down historical barriers and enabling equal participation. Assistive technologies, ranging from basic aids to advanced innovations, are powerful equalizers that enhance functional capabilities and promote independence. They play a transformative role in education, employment, and social engagement, ensuring that individuals with disabilities can access quality education, join the workforce, and connect with their communities.The chapter underscores key best practices, including user-centered design, adherence to accessibility standards, continuous improvement, training and support, and fostering collaborations among stakeholders. These practices are essential in realizing the full potential of assistive technologies and ensuring they become an integral part of an inclusive society. Embracing these best practices unlocks the unique abilities of individuals with disabilities, empowering them to contribute meaningfully to their communities and create a better world for all. Policymakers, educators, employers, and society at large must recognize the significance of assistive technologies and invest in their development and widespread adoption to build a truly inclusive future.

Keywords: Assistive Technologies; Inclusion; Empowerment; Disabilities; Best Practices.

Cite as: Sula, G. (2023). Building an Inclusive Future: Empowering Through Assistive Technologies. In C. Sousa, & A. H. Tkaczyk (Eds.), Media Literacy and Assistive Technologies for Empowerment in Autism (pp. 167-176). Edições Universitárias Lusófonas. https://www.doi.org/10.24140/asdigital.v1.p02.11

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Reference: 2022.07939.PTDC