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Alexandre Gorelik



07/18/2011

UNIC Moscow: Participation in the 3rd International Conference of the Moscow City Government's "Equal Rights - Equal Opportunities" Program, 1 July 2011

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UNIC Moscow participated in the 3rd International Conference of the Moscow City Government's "Equal Rights - Equal Opportunities" event, where it helped shape a special session on 'Accessibility of the Information Environment.'

The 3rd International Conference of the Moscow City Government “Equal Rights – Equal Opportunities” with the theme of ‘Universal Design: New Concepts and Best Examples’ was held in Moscow from 30 June to 1 July 2011. This year, the conference was part of a bigger event, the “Integration. Life. Society. 2011” exhibition/fair – itself a "first” in Russia.
 
Exhibition Complex “ExpoCentre”, Moscow – session on “Accessibility of the Information Environment” in the framework of the Moscow City Government Conference “Equal Rights – Equal Opportunities”, 1 July 2011
 
Exhibition Complex “ExpoCentre” Moscow – session on “Accessibility of the Information Environment” in the framework of the Moscow City Government Conference “Equal Rights – Equal Opportunities” on 1 July 2011. Left to right: Ms Julia Sarviro, Manager of Microsoft social projects in Russia; Mr Alexandre Gorelik, Director of the UNIC Moscow; Mr Axel Leblois, Executive Director of G3ict; Ms Julia Vlassova, UNIC Moscow.
 
UNIC Moscow was asked by “Bezgraniz.ru,” one of the main organizers of the exhibition/fair, to help them with shaping a special session on “Accessibility of the Information Environment” in the framework of the Conference. In addition to our assistance in conceiving the programme of the session and putting together the list of speakers and invitees, the UNIC Director facilitated the discussion.
 
The keynote speaker was Axel Leblois, Executive Director, Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs (G3ict), one of the leading experts in this field, who was invited to Moscow by the organizers, in close collaboration with UNIC. In his insightful remarks, Mr Leblois described the e-accessibility concept and its different facets. In his words, ‘the main idea lies in leveraging ICTs to promote key initiatives and issues, including human rights, eradication of poverty, universal access to education, employment, and inclusive economic and social development. Our keynote speaker also delved into notions of universal design, assistive technologies, and in a broader sense - with regard to the UN Convention - the need to establish a legal and policy agenda at the national level.
 
G3ict-AT&T White Paper in Russian
(Left to right): Mr Alexandre Gorelik, Director of the UNIC Moscow; Mr Axel Leblois, Executive Director of G3ict presenting the G3ict-AT&T White Paper in Russian language; Ms Julia Vlassova, UNIC Moscow
 
Exhibition Complex “ExpoCentre”, Moscow – session on “Accessibility of the Information Environment” in the framework of the Moscow City Government Conference “Equal Rights – Equal Opportunities” 1 July 2011
 
Exhibition Complex “ExpoCentre” Moscow – session on “Accessibility of the Information Environment” in the framework of the Moscow City Government Conference “Equal Rights – Equal Opportunities”. Left to right: Mr Alexei Liubimov, Research Associate at the Institute of Correctional Pedagogy, is addressing the audience; Mr Alexandre Gorelik, Director of the UNIC Moscow; Mr Axel Leblois, Executive Director of G3ict; Ms Julia Vlassova, UNIC Moscow
 
Several Russian experts and researches also made presentations and comments relating to accessibility issues, including training, e-government, consumer services, personal mobility, and independent living.

The discussion, which lasted for three hours, proved to be quite substantive and informative. Mr Leblois’s presentation was unanimously praised as enlightening by the audience. The organizers of the conference confessed later in a conversation with the UNIC Director that both the attendance and the density of the discussion went beyond their expectations! As to the UNIC, our contribution to the session proved to be yet another step in our continuous advocacy efforts focused on e-accessibility issues.