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Age alliance plans digital inclusion knowledge base

A plan to create an online “knowledge base” of resources relating to digital inclusion for older people is being drawn up by Age Action Alliance, an umbrella group of companies and charities led by the Department for Work and Pensions.

The alliance, whose members include the BBC, Microsoft, mobile network Three, Age UK and the digital inclusion charity for older people Digital Unite, has tasked a working group with drawing up a “starter strategy” for the knowledge base covering its potential usefulness, purpose and viability. It will then make a final decision on whether to go ahead with the project at the next meeting of its digital inclusion group in February.

“The aim of the knowledge base is to gather in one place the mass of extensive and varied research, analysis and evaluation data on activities and projects that have, and still are, delivering and facilitating digital literacy for older people”, Emma Solomon, managing director of Digital Unite and the groups’ chair, said this month. “The aim is also to gather – or at least signpost – practitioners to a variety of tools and resources that can help them deliver or facilitate digital inclusion for older people.”

The knowledge base will be aimed at all practitioners and promoters of digital inclusion for older people, Solomon said. “These may be formal intermediaries, informal intermediaries and individuals as well as organisations and businesses from third, private and public sectors.”

As a separate project, the group also hopes to help co-ordinate the promotion of all actions, events and activities that promote digital inclusion to older people by creating a searchable national database of all campaigns, outreach projects, learning and engagement activities in which older people are being encouraged and supported to embrace digital technologies, she said.

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