Inclusive technology evangelist, keynote speaker and co-founder of the Molly Watt Trust. Usability and Accesibility Consultant specialising in assistive technology and design for those with sensory impairments: Deaf, hard of hearing, blind and deaf blind.
The Molly Watt Trust was set up to raise awareness of Usher Syndrome, a rare genetic condition which was discovered by Scottish Ophthalmologist Charles Usher back in 1914 it causes both Deafness and Retinitus Pigmentosa (a form of blindness).
Usher Syndrome is a progressive condition and to date there is no cure. Usher Syndrome not only affects hearing and sight but also causes considerable difficulty with mobility and communication and in effect can lead to isolation and depression.
Many use hearing aids or cochlear implants to access sound and are able to communicate with speech, however, as sight deteriorates it appears that so too does hearing because the ability to use visual clues like lip reading, facial feature and body language decrease.
Some communicate with sign language or tactile signing as sight deteriorates. Many maintain a small amount of central vision which remains good but makes life incredibly challenging.
Great technology affords the Usher Community to access the world, computers with the relevant software, magnifiers, eReaders, some can benefit from speech to text software, large text and tactile aids.
The Molly Watt Trust recognises many of the challenges and as a result is very active on social media, sharing information and experiences and continues to fundraise for small items or equipment to enhance life with Usher Syndrome.
Details of the condition are general, each person with the condition is unique.
During a career spanning 25 years in HR and diversity consultancy, Jane gained a Master of Science degree in Human Resource Development, and became a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. She is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
In 2011 Jane founded Evenbreak, an award-winning social enterprise helping employers such as EY, Network Rail, John Lewis, BBC and others to become more attractive to talented disabled candidates. Jane runs Evenbreak lying flat with a laptop suspended above her as her degenerative spinal condition makes sitting very difficult. All employees of Evenbreak are disabled and work flexibly from home.
- Finalist in Stelios Disabled Entrepreneur of the Year, 2008
- OnRec Industry Awards Winner 2014
- National Business Awards Finalist 2014
- Social Enterprise of the Year Finalist 2015
- Excellence in Diversity Awards Category Winner 2015
Jane is widely published in the field of inclusion, and is an accomplished speaker at major conferences and events. She is a Trustee of two charities working with adults with learning disabilities and autism. She is also the Patron of the Inclusive Skills Competitions.
Subjects that Jane writes and speaks on include:
- The benefits of employing disabled people
- The social model of disability
- Disability etiquette
- Inclusive recruitment
- Strategies for attracting diverse candidates
- Reasonable adjustments
- Removing barriers
- Supporting and retaining disabled employees
- Accessibility and inclusion in the workplace
Three decades of analyzing the future of the telecoms and its related technology and industries, as well as defining accessibility into product development and life cycles. Leading Telecoms Analyst. Reputation for irreverent & open opinions of emerging ICT market.
Registered blind throughout his career and a leading user of assistive technology, Chris now brings his knowledge to help the charitable organisations, the healthcare sector and the ICT industry. His unique understanding of the interplay between business processes, communications technology and people is allowing organisations to expose the potential opportunity presented by leveraging technology for the disabled community. Chris has published reports on the accessibility issue and presented at the last two Mobile World Congress events on the topic.
In addition to his commentary on the industry, Chris is a frequent public speaker at industry and client events around the world. His dynamic and engaging presentation style, coupled with in-depth industry knowledge, has resulted in keynote addresses, chairing panels, workshop facilitation and coaching of high level executives at many of the world’s top telcos and ICT companies.
With a reputation for honest, sometimes irreverent, insight built on unparalleled understanding of industry evolution and dynamics, Chris is proud of long term key stakeholder relationships developed around the world with leading players. He has accumulated a vast network of contacts in the analyst and consulting communities from tenures at IDC, Logica, Yankee Group and Ovum.
Chris also sits on several Boards in the Visually Impaired charity sector where he brings his technology knowledge to help the RNIB and Vision 2020 leverage telecoms and communications technology for the blind and partially sighted community.
Platform architect at the Economist. Expert in accessibility-related standards and technologies. Ex Accessibility Evangelist & Software Engineer at Yahoo.
The blind computer scientist is working as a software engineer in London, UK. He is using a screen-reader for his daily work. His experience regarding accessibility and usability of software, use of assistive technology and all technology related to the internet goes back to 1992, when he commenced his studies at the Technical University of Clausthal, Germany. Since those early days, he tries to drive everyone around him to support accessibility and design for all.
Co-founder and Partnerships Director @givevision
GiveVision is on a mission to give greater mobility and independence through technology to people suffering from sight loss. They have been working on different applications powered by smart glasses to assist them in their everyday lives. Translating visual information into audio in real time and enhancing their remaining vision are our main areas of focus.
Magdalena Slowinska Janowitz
CEO/Service Design Innovation @includeon
A social entrepreneur, Occupational Therapist, Psychologist and Service Designer passionate about accessible technologies and connected workplace.
Includeon – an inclusive web-based platform and app providing remote jobs ecosystem and virtual active employment support accessible to Deaf and disabled people (offering e-work, active employment support, career coaching and emotional intelligence support and training using audio- visual emotion recognition). MVP ready/testing stage.
Magdalena believes that accessible technology can significantly improve the quality of employment for disabled people.