To Örebro University

oru.seÖrebro University Publications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
The portrait of older people as (non) users of digital technologies: A scoping literature review and a typology of digital older (non) users
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences. (Successful Ageing)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8391-5606
2020 (English)In: Gerontechnology, ISSN 1569-1101, E-ISSN 1569-111X, Vol. 19, no 3, p. 1-15Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: The images of older people while using (or not) technology is a theme that plays a crucial role not only in the implementation of policies, but also in the design of e-services or more broadly e-governance. Older people is a complex and a non-homogenous group that requires public (welfare) services which in many cases have been moved to a digital interface. The real challenge is to provide these services without excluding anyone.

Objective: This paper aims to investigate how older people are represented as (non)users of technology in the digital literature and public discourse and to produce a typology of older digital users based on the work of Schneider and Ingram (1993). Method: The study followed established methods for a scoping literature review to discover the profile of older digital (non) users and their relationship with technology. Results: Based on this literature review, two positive profiles of different power were found: the silver surfers or “athletes” who are proficient digital users and the “older people with borrowed access” to digital technologies who are less powerful and independent while using technology. On the other hand, we also found some negative images of older adults: the “laidback” who are reluctant to use digital technologies but they have the necessary intellectual capacity to acquire IT skills on their own (strong in terms of power). The biggest group entails older people as technophobic, non-users, want-nots, digitally backward/internet laggards, digital immigrants, needy and those who are unaware of their digital condition.

Conclusion: This research could offer a substantial contribution to policy-makers and public servants to provide better and friendlier online services, digital tools and applications in conjunction with the supply of IT courses for older individuals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
International Society for Gerontechnology , 2020. Vol. 19, no 3, p. 1-15
Keywords [en]
Grey digital divide, older people, ICTs, internet, public policy
National Category
Humanities and the Arts Information Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-87075DOI: 10.4017/gt.2020.19.003.11OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-87075DiVA, id: diva2:1485295
Available from: 2020-11-02 Created: 2020-11-02 Last updated: 2022-12-27Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. "Please Mind the Grey Digital Divide": An Analysis of Digital Public Policies in Light of the Welfare State (Sweden and Greece)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>"Please Mind the Grey Digital Divide": An Analysis of Digital Public Policies in Light of the Welfare State (Sweden and Greece)
2022 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis examines the grey digital divide and digital policies in the divergent welfare regimes of Sweden and Greece. The grey digital divide is a serious problem not only for the individual but also for society. The grey digital divide signifies the inability of older people to utilize digital technology. In academic circles, the emphasis is mostly on the technological aspects of the grey digital divide or on the individual characteristics of older people as (non)users of digital tools. However, the problem is more complex in nature and is interconnected with the aging process and experience. 

The grey digital divide has multiple levels: the first concerns access, the second skills, and the third opportunities. This thesis concentrates mostly on the third level of digital divide because it touches on the welfare denominator. This particular level describes the encounters that older citizens need to have with the digital welfare state and the obstacles that they might face in doing this. Older digital “offliners” cannot take advantage of the welfare services that they need for their own well-being and cannot participate as equal citizens in digital space, which is expanding on a daily basis with new digital services.

This thesis is situated in the discipline of political science and draws on various disciplines, such as political science (welfare regime theory, neo-institutionalism, and path-dependency), public policy (active aging paradigm), gerontology (disengagement), sociology (exclusion via the digital-by-default approach), and ICT studies (the phenomenon of digitalization and the third-level of the digital divide). The thesis is a compilation of papers and consists of two qualitative case studies, a comparative study, and a scoping literature review. The key findings are as follows: 1) older people are a heterogeneous group and this applies in the digital world as well, with the appearance of heterogeneous digital profiles; 2) the welfare regime seems to affect the manifestation of the grey digital divide and there is a path-dependency pattern in this; 3) the more digitalized a society, the greater the chance that older people not using technology will be excluded from the digital and social spheres; and 4) digital policies indicate the priorities of every society and how older people are perceived as a social group.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro University, 2022. p. 126
Series
Örebro Studies in Political Science, ISSN 1650-1632 ; 46
Keywords
grey digital divide, welfare regimes, digital public policies, digital technologies, older people
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-102757 (URN)9789175294810 (ISBN)
Public defence
2023-01-20, Örebro universitet, Forumhuset, Hörsal F, Fakultetsgatan 1, Örebro, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

Fel ISSN-nr är angivet i den tryckta versionen av avhandlingen, 1651-1328.

Available from: 2022-12-16 Created: 2022-12-16 Last updated: 2023-02-03Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text in DiVA

Other links

Publisher's full text

Authority records

Alexopoulou, Sofia

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Alexopoulou, Sofia
By organisation
School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences
In the same journal
Gerontechnology
Humanities and the ArtsInformation Systems

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar

doi
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
urn-nbn
Total: 672 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf