Committed to connecting the world

Accessibility to ICTs: Achieving equitable communications for everyone

​​15 per cent of the world’s population lives with a disability. This represents about 1 billion people globally. Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), such as mobile phones, satellites or the Internet, are a unique infrastructure that expand access to key  public services, promoting digital inclusion. Throughout the world, persons living with disabilities are already benefitting from the advantages of ICT-enabled applications. 
But more needs to be done. To extend the benefits of ICTs to all, ICTs have to be made accessible to persons living with disabilities, so these technologies constitute an opportunity and not a barrier. Get involved in ITU activities to make ICT accessible to persons living with disabilities and to achieving equitable communications for everyone.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ ​​​

Accessible Americas - Information and Communications for ALL

San Paolo from 12-14 November 2014​​

'Accessible Americas: Information and Communication for ALL', is a landmark event aimed at identifying accessibility implementation practices for stakeholders in the Americas Region. The focus will be on how these stakeholders can ensure that assistive technology and accessible Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are widely available and affordable for Persons with Disabilities.  This event will further highlight the importance of ICTs as a tool to empower Persons with Disabilities, emphasizing that through cooperation, capacity building and the development of policies and strategies it is possible to remove barriers and enable social inclusion. 

Click here to find out more about this event


Resolution 175 instructed ITU to establish a fund to expand ITU's activities in the area of accessible ICTs and to make ITU a more accessible organization. The ITU Accessibility Trust Fund, is open to voluntary contributions from ITU Member States, Sector Members and academia.

Click here to find out more​​


A new report released on September 2013 demonstrates how ICTs, have become a positive force of transformation and a crucial element of any personal development, empowerment and institutional framework for inclusive development. “The ICT Opportunity for a Disability-Inclusive Development Framework” contributes to a better understanding of the extent to which ICTs can enable and accelerate the social and economic inclusion of persons with disabilities. It lists challenges that are still to be addressed while outlining concrete actions to be undertaken by each group of stakeholders and a set of indicators to help measuring progress towards the achievement of a disability-inclusive development agenda.




ITU and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) are organizing an IPTV application challenge titled "Better quality of life with international standards: an accessible world for all". The Challenge is focusing especially on accessibility aspects to raise awareness of the importance of multimedia and multimodal audiovisual accessibility for everyone, especially persons with a variety of levels and types of disability. The Challenge will give both experts and non-experts a chance to uncover their innovative ideas and to develop/refine their applications for actual deployment in systems built to ITU-T's global IPTV standards.

For more information on the challenge click here.


The  IRG-AVA (Intersector Rapporteur Group on Audiovisual Media Accessibility) studies topics related to audiovisual media accessibility and aims at developing draft Recommendations for “Access Systems” that can be used for all media delivery systems, including broadcast, cable, Internet, and IPTV.

For more information, click here.


​ITU actively contributes to the promotion of the rights of persons with disabilities within the UN system. The report “The ICT Opportunity for a Disability-Inclusive Development Framework" was an advocacy tool to encourage mention of ICT accessibility within the outcome document of the High-Level meeting of the General Assembly on Disability and Development (HLMDD), held in 2013. This outcome document explicitly acknowledged the obligation to ensure accessibility “following the universal design approach, by removing barriers to the physical environment, transportation, employment, education, health services, information and assistive devices”. ITU also contributes to the work of the CRPD and of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. 

For more information: UN Enable- Work of the United Nations on Persons with Disabilities 


This joint ITU-G3ICT report looks at the strategic implications of making audiovisual content accessible to persons with disabilities​. It is written for professionals ​involved in decisions to introduce or scale up measures to make television and other ​kinds of audiovisual content accessible.​


This joint ITU-G3ICT study compiles and  analyses different ways in which mainstream accessible mobile phone technologies and services are already implemented around the world by various stakeholders. It includes practical information and case studies which can serve as a foundation to promoting accessible mobile phones and mobile assistive technologies.
Download the report for free:


 ITU is committed to becoming a fully accessible organization for staff, delegates and the general public living with disabilities. 

Click here to find out how ITU is working to become an accessible organization