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Inclusion is an important value that society aspire to nurture and maintain. As a society, we want to be inclusive and think increasingly progressively about inclusion. Yet, the interactive technologies that we have been developing over the past few decades do not live up to these aspirations, in fact, they often work against them.

The interactive technologies we use in our daily lives are now highly individualised and continue to employ an impoverished range of sensory and cognitive capabilities and modalities for interaction, resulting in the exclusion of the most vulnerable members of our society.

In this talk, Dr Oussama Metatla, Reader in Human-Computer Interaction at the University of Bristol, outlines several research projects that he and his team have been carrying out in the Diverse-ability Interaction Lab at the University of Bristol, where he researches inclusive technologies connecting disabled and non-disabled people.

He will discuss areas where he found traditional notions of assistive technology had failed to be inclusive, and how these issues of exclusion could be addressed.

He surveys co-design as an inclusive methodology for engaging disabled and non-disabled people in joint design endeavours; combined with experimental methodologies in cross-sensory and embodied cognition that help us identify potential joint common ground that could form the basis for the design of technologies that are inclusive of both disabled and non-disabled people. 

Dr Oussama Metatla, Reader in Human-Computer Interaction at the University of Bristol
Dr Oussama Metatla


Dr Oussama Metatla is Associate Professor (Reader) of Human-Computer Interaction at the University of Bristol. He is Co-Head of the Bristol Interaction Group and leads the Diverse-Ability Interaction Lab, where he and his team investigate how to design, engineer, and evaluate technologies that can support inclusive interactions between disabled and non-disabled people across a range of groups, domains and contexts, including visual impairment, neurodiversity, and cognitive and physical impairment in education, work and leisure. He was previously an EPSRC Early Career Research Fellow pushing the agenda of inclusive education technologies for blind and visually impaired children in mainstream schools, and he has recently been awarded an ERC Consolidator Grant to investigate how theories of cross-sensory perception and embodied cognition could inform the design of multisensory technology in ways that could radically change the landscape of inclusive interaction design.

How to join

Open to everyone: Please email Alfie Abdul-Rahman to register and arrange access.

Event details

Bush House (S)5.01
Bush House
Strand campus, 30 Aldwych, London, WC2B 4BG