Universal design, participation and democracy
Universal design means that society, goods and services are designed and function regardless of everyone's different needs and circumstances. In this project, we seek to promote an inclusive, socially sustainable society based on human diversity and which contributes to sustainable development.
To achieve sustainable development, the UN’s member states have adopted Agenda 2030 with 17 goals and 169 targets. The agenda’s goals promote social, economic and ecological sustainability in a world where no one is excluded. A disability perspective and the need to improve accessibility and living conditions for people with disabilities are explicitly expressed in many goals and targets.
The purpose of this Nordic project is to promote the exchange of experience and knowledge based on five of Agenda 2030’s targets. This will be done by creating networks, collecting knowledge and good examples of how Agenda 2030 can be implemented, and by finding formats for Nordic collaboration that can support implementation. Five Nordic networks will be formed and coordinated by the national authorities in the countries. Organisations in civil society that represent people with disabilities will be involved at every stage of the project. The networks will work with themes linked to the following Agenda 2030 targets:
- Target 10.2 Democracy presupposes participation, and participation requires universal design
- Target 11.2 Universally designed transport systems for citizens and visitors in the Nordics
- Target 11.3 Smart cities are universally designed cities
- Target 16.7 How participatory and representative are the public political systems in the Nordics?
- Target 17.7 User involvement and civic dialogues create better solutions for everyone
The project will be coordinated by the Nordic Welfare Centre and will be conducted in close consultation with organisations representing people with disabilities, and other relevant bodies. In particular, organisations representing the major disability groups (sight, hearing, mobility and cognition) will be involved in a meaningful way. A youth panel will serve as a reference group for the project.