Barriers to digital inclusion among older people: a intergenerational reflection on the need to develop digital competences for the group with the highest level of digital exclusion




digital skills,, digital competences, digital inclusion, digital divide, older people, Poland


Over the past thirty years and with the rise of the digital society, the process of digital exclusion has become increasingly noticeable and represents a sub-type of social exclusion. Shaping digital competences in the era of the intensive development of the information society requires constant reflection on the effectiveness of such activities. This article looks at what kind of barriers are currently blocking the development of digital competences among older people. Using structured interviews, responses were obtained from 30 respondents in Poland, though the respondents themselves did not belong to the demographic of older people. The respondents identified eight main types of barriers to digital inclusion for older people: 1) Fear of new technologies, 2) No need to use ICT, 3) Self-marginalisation in the information society, 4) The characteristics of new media, 5) Attitude to Life-Long Learning, 6) Physical limitations, 7) Economic determinants, and 8) Infrastructural limitations. The results of the qualitative research provide a fresh look at the process of the formation of digital competence among vulnerable groups within the wider process of digital inclusion. This article is the result of an international project REMEDIS supported in Poland by the National Science Centre - NCN [021/03/Y/HS6/00275].


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Author Biographies

Lukasz Tomczyk, Jagiellonian University

Jagiellonian University, Poland

Maria Lidia Mascia, Universita' Degli Studi Di Cagliari

Universita' Degli Studi Di Cagliari, Italy

Dorota Gierszewski, Jagiellonian University

Jagiellonian University, Poland

Christopher Walker, International House Bielsko-Biała

International House Bielsko-Biała, Poland


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How to Cite

Tomczyk, L., Mascia, M. L., Gierszewski, D., & Walker, C. (2023). Barriers to digital inclusion among older people: a intergenerational reflection on the need to develop digital competences for the group with the highest level of digital exclusion. Innoeduca. International Journal of Technology and Educational Innovation, 9(1), 5–26.