The ‚ÄúMeAC ‚Äď Measuring Progress of eAccessibility in Europe‚ÄĚ study was implemented in early 2006 as part of the follow-up to the European Commission‚Äôs Communication on eAccessibility of 2005. For the first time, this study has provided a comprehensive benchmarking of the eAccessibility situation in the EU Member States and three non-European comparison countries. The MeAC project was terminated in 2008 after a 3 year duration. The data set generated in the framework of this unique research endeavour represented by far the largest and most representative information on eAccessibility that has been available at that point in time. This web site has not been updated since then, but it is hoped that it still provides useful source of information.
A new report has become available presenting the results of a study to provide data and analysis to support the European Commission in the identification of EU-level measures that can help to progress the achievement of greater levels of web accessibility across the Member States.¬† A core focus of the report is on the issue of transitioning to WCAG 2.0 guidelines against the current background where Member States have, in the main, being targeting their efforts towards the earlier WCAG 1.0 guidelines.
The main methods used in generating the data and information presented in the report were:
- collection of information on the national situations in selected Member States (through desk research and information provided by official contacts)
- examination of compliance with WCAG 1.0 and 2.0 guidelines for a representative sample of websites.
The study aims provides evidence and analysis to help understand and compare the approaches followed by the European countries, with a view to identifying issues and challenges, good practices and future priorities in the web accessibility field.
The MeAC Country Profiles provide an overview of relevant policies and levels of eAccessibility actually achieved in 25 EU countries, Australia, Canada and the United States of America. They are based on the information gathered by the MeAC study team and on updates provided by visitors to this website. Each profile starts with a brief summary assessment followed by more detailed information presented according to several sub-themes.
The Country Profiles offer an opportunity to learn more about the current state of affairs in a given country to people dealing with eAccessibility (including representatives from disability organisations or industry, policy makers, researchers and others). At the same time they are envisaged to be a living source of information and people are invited to contribute actively to their ongoing development. To this end, we would welcome any corrections, further or additional information you can provide. You can send us your input by using the comment function at the end of each of the thematic sections of the Country Profiles.
If you are interested in getting a comprehensive insight into the eAccessibility situation in the EU and other countries – including relevant policy measures and data on the actual levels of eAccessibility – the MeAC study report might be of interest to you.
On 171 pages plus two annex documents it presents the results of two years of research and analysis. An Executive Summary (available as a separate document) provides a quick overview of the study’s key findings.
The ‚ÄúMeAC – Measuring Progress of eAccessibility in Europe‚ÄĚ study was implemented as part of the follow-up to the European Commission‚Äôs Communication on eAccessibility of 2005. For the first time, this study has provided a comprehensive benchmarking of the eAccessibility situation in the EU Member States and three non-European comparison countries. The data set generated for this purpose represents by far the largest and most representative information on eAccessibility that has been available to date.
If you are interested in learning more about how this data has been collected, please see our approach and methods.
All in all, the results of MeAC show that, whilst some progress towards eAccessibility can be detected in Europe, this has not been enough and
- people with disabilities in Europe continue to be confronted with many barriers to ICT usage (eAccessibility deficit),
- the eAccessibility situation across Europe as a whole compares very unfavourably with that in Australia, Canada and the USA (eAccessibility gap),
- the situation across Europe shows many ‚Äėwhite spaces‚Äô or areas of uneven attention (eAccessibility patchwork).