Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Digital Government: Narrowing the Divides

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    Information Technology Adaption by Senior Citizens: Why Seniors Use IT
    ( 2023-01-03) Yasuoka, Mika
    Along with the progress of digitalization, it becomes essential for everyone to use digital means at every corner in society. At the same time, the potential disadvantages of not being able to use digital services have increased. This paper, by focusing on the elderly as one of the central concerns in the digital divide discussion, studies the elderly’s technology acceptance through a comparative study of two countries. Denmark and Japan are chosen as subjects of the study, which have similarly advanced IT infrastructure but significant difference in IT utilization among the elderly. The comparative analysis shows that reasons why the elderly do not use IT are very different, but three key aspects are identified as essential drivers of IT use. That is: advanced usability, informal supporters, and external mandate. Our work identifies findings within the current digital divide discussion and provides implications for the future inclusion strategies of the elderly.
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    Evaluating the Accessibility of Digital Government Services for Family Law in the U.S. during the COVID-19 Pandemic
    ( 2023-01-03) Wentz, Brian ; Paliwal, Sparsh ; Gorham-Oscilowski, Ursula ; Jaeger, Paul ; Lazar, Jonathan
    The COVID-19 pandemic forced state courts to more fully embrace electronic filing, access to forms, and remote hearings. As a result, individuals navigating the legal system during this transition had to rely on digital access to court forms. While the courts have been praised for their ability to adapt, the extent to which online court forms are accessible for individuals with disabilities remains an open question. In this preliminary study focused on the policy implications of inaccessible court forms, we evaluated the accessibility of PDF divorce forms used in 10 states. The study revealed that that none of the forms were completely accessible, suggesting that individuals with disabilities may find it challenging -- if not impossible -- to independently complete and fill out family law courts forms. This lack of accessibility is more than a technical issue, as it also raises concerns about “accessibility to justice.”
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    Methods and (Lack) of Theory in Digital Inclusion, Digital Divide, and Digital Equity Research on Older Adults
    ( 2023-01-03) Chikomba, Alfred ; Goudling, Anne ; Sanderson, Lara ; Sylvester, Allan ; Campbell-Meier, Jennifer
    Older adults, as a group, have been the focus of considerable attention from digital inclusion researchers. The paper analyses literature on the digital inclusion, digital divide, and digital equity of older adults from the last five years (2017-2022) to explore the extent to which recent digital inclusion research considers developments in the field and explores how research has progressed from exploration to theory building and the empirical testing of models. The paper contributes to our understanding of digital inclusion research on older adults through an analysis of methodologies and theories employed, and the topics investigated. Trends, deficits and gaps for future research are identified, with suggestions for how our knowledge, understanding and conceptualization of older adults’ digital inclusion may be advanced further.