Conference: Practices of Digital In- and exclusion in Everyday Life (Groningen)

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This conference considers citizens’ everyday experiences of digital in- and exclusion. It focuses on the practices and tactics they employ in everyday life. Governments, employers, schools and other institutions increasingly expect people to participate digitally; yet, even in digitally advanced countries where internet access is almost ubiquitous, large groups of citizens lack basic digital literacies. This conference focuses on the practices and tactics through which citizens deal with the increasing digitalization of their everyday life. Going beyond who is left behind or what skills or knowledge are lacking, it explicitly takes a user-centric approach to understand the impact of digital in-and exclusion from the perspective of citizens themselves.

Over the past decades, scholars from various academic disciplines have researched digital inclusion, from sociological, post-colonial, gender, socio-economic, political, technical and many other scientific paradigms. This has led to a broad range of conceptual frameworks for digital literacies, as well as theoretical explorations of the various ‘new’ literacies that are necessary for participation in digital societies. What still remains relatively unexplored is how citizens experience digital inclusion and exclusion, and the tactics and practices they employ to participate. In this conference we seek to gain insight into the social, civic and political implications of digital in- and/or exclusion in people’s everyday life. How do citizens develop and translate digital literacies into media practices across the lifespan? How do citizens navigate gaps in digital literacies within the various realms of everyday life? And what are the implications of digital exclusion for everyday practices of digital citizenship?


This conference instigates to gain an in-depth understanding of how citizens of various socioeconomic backgrounds, ages and with different levels of education develop digital literacies throughout their lives, and under what circumstances these become valuable for their participation and inclusion. Such an user-centric approach  helps to advance knowledge about how digital literacies are developed from a young age, the various social contexts in which these processes take place, and how such knowledge is appropriated, shaped and employed within informal and formal everyday practices and settings. Moreover, emphasizing the development of digital literacies as a situated social practice, gives insights into the social contexts through which people develop digital literacy practices, how they construct and integrate social norms around technologies, and the links between digital literacies and (digital) citizenship. 

As concerns about digital in- and exclusion grow, this conference invites papers that collectively help us to gain insight into the impact of digital in- and exclusion in everyday life settings, to ultimately foster digital inclusion both through academic research and through practical interventions. Specifically, we welcome studies and research projects that focus on issues and themes such as: 

  • Practices and tactics of digital inclusion, digital exclusion, digital participation and/or digital literacy; 

  • Lived experiences and understandings of digital literacies;

  • Differences between developing (digital/media) literacies in formal and informal learning spaces; 

  • Studying everyday experiences surrounding digital inclusion in different contexts; 

  • Conceptual tools for studying digital inclusion/exclusion in everyday life; 

  • Methodological challenges of researching digital inclusion and/or digital literacies in everyday life;

  • Everyday uses and/or educational approaches to various literacies and participation;

  • And other topics closely related to user-centric perspectives, digital inclusion and everyday-life practices and tactics.

Abstracts (maximum 500 words) are invited for consideration as contributions to the main conference program. Please attach a short biography (+/- 250 words, including role and affiliation).

Deadline for submission of abstracts for main conference and PhD workshop: February 15, 2023.  Notification of accepted papers will be given in late February.

Conference fee: € 125 (incl. lunches, refreshments and conference dinner)

This conference is organized in the context of the NWO supported research project “Informed Citizenship for All: Digital Literacy as Prerequisite for an Inclusive Society” (2020-2024; PI prof. Marcel Broersma). It is also related to projects the Digital Inclusion Lab of the University of Groningen does with 19 social stakeholders within the Digital Literacy Coalition (