DIGNITY is investigating how people across Europe use digital mobility services. Talking to citizens from a range of different social groups, DIGNITY user surveys seek to find out about any limitations people are experiencing in their daily travel due to the digitalisation of products and services.
Digital skills are increasingly required to access mobility services, and the DIGNITY survey shows that one in three people in Italy are experiencing limitations to their mobility because they lack the necessary know-how. In older age groups and those with low incomes, this figure rises to around 50%, and more than 60% of people with disabilities.
Using technology to look up travel information
More than half of the general population use digital tools to find travel information (54%). But the picture is different for several vulnerable-to-exclusion groups. Only one in three migrants look up travel information digitally, one in three low-income individuals, one in four people with disabilities and less than one in five people age 65 or older.
What about the confidence people have in using digital products? 56% of the general population do feel confident using an app or a smartphone to plan an unfamiliar local journey. This rises slightly for migrants (63%) and decreases overall for women (50%). The bigger differences are again noted for those on low incomes, where just one in three people feel confident in using an app or smartphone to plan a journey; one in four disabled people; and one in five elderly people.
Who is at the greatest risk of exclusion?
There is clear evidence of a digital gap in mobility for several groups in Italy, notably the elderly, people with disabilities and those with low incomes. The divide applies to migrants and women as well, but to a lesser extent. The data shows that there is great potential for products that provide travel information digitally, but that the needs of these vulnerable groups should be considered when designing them. If people cannot access the information they require in order to travel, their exclusion risk will increase.
We cannot have a truly inclusive digital mobility ecosystem without taking the perspective of these vulnerable groups into account. The DIGNITY data from Italy shows which groups are at risk of exclusion – now it is time to pave the way ahead.