TechShare Pro 2021

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AbilityNet TechShare Pro is Europe's biggest gathering for the accessibility and inclusive design community, with an engaging blend of inspiration and practical insights, including business strategy, accessibility leadership and digital practice.

2021's event took place online on 16, 17 and 18 November 2021.

Tuesday 16 November 2021: Business Advantage

11:00 - 12:30 Keynote: Business Advantage of Disability Inclusion

Why invest in accessibility and inclusion?
  • Christopher Patnoe - Head of Accessibility Programs and Digital Inclusion, Google
  • Prateek Madhav - Co-Founder an CEO, AssisTech Foundation
  • Varun Chandak - Founder, Access to Success Organisation
  • Bernard Chiira - Director, Innovate Now

Delivering business advantage

  • Pilar Lopez - President, Microsoft Spain
  • Alisa Choong - SVP and CIO, Information & Digital Services and Operations, Shell
  • Cristina Ghetti - Head of Workforce IT, Nestle
  • Moderator: Corie Brown - Continuity Announcer & Co-Chari of 4Purple, Channel 4


13:00 - 14:00 Lunch and Learn

14:15 - 15:15 Accessible packaging (sorry no recording available)

  • How does accessible packaging enable more independent lives for disabled people?
  • With RNIB, Kellogg's, Navilens, Procter and Gamble and others

14:15 - 15:15 Accessible games (sorry no recording available)

  • Learn how the XBox team is using its Accessibility PlayBook to work with studios
  • With Anita Mortaloni, Xbox, Xander Ashwell, Rare Studios, Vivek Gohil, Gaming Accessibility Consultant and Daffyd Henke-Reed, AbilityNet

15:30 - 16:30 Accessible XR/AR/VR

  • What are the accessibility challenges for Augmented and Virtual Reality - and who is addressing them?
  • Adi Latif, AbilityNet, Chris Hainsworth, Blind Burners, Matthew Johnston, Thought Works and more

15:30 - 16:30 Accessible Broadcast and Audio Description

  • Learn more about audio description and other key issues for broadcasters
  • With John Paton, RNIB, Daniel Kocmarek, Amazon Prime Video, Elfed Howells, Macroblock, Cathy Taylor, Ofcom and Roz Chalmers, Independent Audio Describer, National Theatre and Old Vic

17:00 - 18:30 Keynote: Business Advantage of Disability Inclusion

How to build a unicorn with inclusive design

  • Johan Brand - Chief Entrepreneur, Chair & Founder, Kahoot!
  • Rama Gheerawo - Director, The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, RCA

Building a global disability movement

  • Betsy Beaumon - Chief Product Officer, The Valuable 500
  • Larry Goldberg - Head of Accessibility, Yahoo!
  • Laura Allen - Head of Strategy, Accessibility & Disability Inclusion, Google
  • Carrie Hughes - Director of Social Innovation, Verizon

The brand value of accessibility

  • Phil Spencer - Executive Vice President, Gaming, Microsoft
  • Cindy Rose - President Western Europe, Microsoft
  • Rob Reilly - Global Chief Creative Officer, WPP


Wednesday 17 November: Policy


11:00 - 12:30 Keynote: Influencing Policy

EU Disability Strategy & UK Disability Strategy - an update

  • Alejandro Moledo - Head of Policy, Europen Disability Forum
  • Clive Gilbert - Policy Manager, Assistive Technology, PolicyConnect

Closing the Digital Divide for People with Learning Disabilities

  • Amy Low - Service Delivery Director, AbilityNet
  • Emma Stone - Director of Evidence & Engagement, Good Things Foundation
  • Priya Ramdas - Digital Skills and Inclusion Team Leader, Department of Culture Media and Sport
  • Robert Mclaren - Head of Assistive & Accessible Tech, PolicyConnect 

Building a diverse workplace

  • Amanda Wadsworth - Disability Policy Adviser, Department of Work and Pensions
  • Shanna Wendt - Vice President of Communications, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners
  • Holly Addison - Senior Client Partner, Korn Ferry
  • Mark Russell - Inclusion, Diversity and Social Equality Manager, KPMG


13:00 - 14:00 Lunch and Learn – workshops, show and tell

14:15 - 15:15 Inclusive hybrid workplaces

  • How do we ensure productivity and well-being in the blended workplace?
  • With Business Disability Forum, Microsoft, AbilityNet and others

14:15 - 15:15 Windows 11 and the Microsoft Inclusive Design Journey

Meet the team who have been building the accessibility features in the latest version of Windows

15:30 - 16:30 Designing Accessible Learning Content

  • How do we ensure that the learning resources are accessible to all?
  • Susi Miller, eLabs, Amy Low, AbilityNet, Diane Elkins, Co-Owner Artisan eLearning and eLearning uncovered, Todd Cummings, CRO eLearning Brothers, Sam Cook, Intellum, Paul Schneider PhD, dominKnow

15:30 - 16:30 Digital transformation: Making Tax Accessible

  • How do you build accessibility into large-scale digital transformation projects?
  • Presentations and panel discussion with HMRC, Quickbooks/Intuit and others

17:00 - 18:30 Keynote: How change happens

Disability representation and the power of social media

  • Emma Lawton - Co-Founder, More Human
  • Dom Hyams - Head of Strategy, Purple Goat Agency
  • Paula Carozzo - Advodate, Disabled Influencer and Model

How change happens

  • Vint Cerf - Vice President & Chief Internet Evangelist, Google
  • Haben Girma - Disability Justice Lawyer
  • Robin Christopherson MBE - Head of Digital Inclusion, AbilityNet

How to make developers into accessibility allies?

  • Dona Sarkar - Director of Technology, Microsoft Accessibility
  • Tom Nabarro - Senior Software Engineer, Intel
  • Juanjo Montiel - Senior Software Development Engineer, Microsoft


18:30 - 19:30 Networking

Including speed networking, hosted networking and informal meetups: 

  • How to help digitally excluded people get confident using digital services
    Join AbilityNet, SeeAbility, Good Things Foundation and Keyring for a BYO cocktail hour chat with top tips for building confidence for how to help disabled people access online services and adapt their devices to meet their needs.
  • Accessible Mapping
    Jess Cahill and others at AbilityNet are hosting a meeting for anyone interested in how mapping and GIS tools can be used by disabled people Accessible maps.


Thursday 18 November: Accessibility Leadership

11:00 - 12:30 Keynote: How to win allies and influence people

Making change happen at scale

  • Ellie Runcie - Chief Design Officer, BBC
  • Jen Kozenski Devins - Head of Design, Accessibility & Disability Inclusion, Google

The accessibility journey

  • Ted Drake - Global Accessibility Leader, Intuit
  • Heather Hepburn - Accessibility Lead, SkyScanner

What do IT professionals think about accessibility?

  • Maggie Holland - Global Editorial Director & Head of Content, IT Pro
  • Sarah Botterill - Marketing Manager, Free Services, AbilityNet
  • Ritam Gandhi - Founder, Studio Graphene
  • Gerard McGovern - CIO, Guide Dogs for the Blind Association


13:00 - 14:00 Lunch and Learn – workshops, show and tell

14:15 - 15:15 How to Build an Accessibility Champions Networks

Share ideas and top tips about building and growing a successful accessibility champions network.

  • With BBC, UbiSoft, Google and more

14:15 - 15:15 Accessible Music Production

  • With Digit Music and others TBC

15:30 - 16:30 How to Run Accessible Virtual Events

  • What are the options for accessible online events?
  • Join Attendable, AccessLoop, Business Disability Forum, Opsgilty and more

15:30 - 16:30 How to Use Accessibility Maturity Models

  • What Accessibility Maturity Models for? Who is using them?  What can they do for your organisation?
  • With Business Disability Forum, AbilityNet, Microsoft and others TBC

17:00 - 18:30 Keynote: The future of accessibility

GAAD Foundation

  • Joe Devon - Co-Founder, Diamond & GAAD
  • Jennison Asuncion - Co-Founder, GAAD

Accessible music production & performance: all music lovers can become music makers

  • Si Tew - Founder, Digit Music
  • Jess Fisher - Content Creator, Digit Music

Accessibility 2030: The future of accessibility and assistive technology

  • Christopher Lee - Managing Director, IAAP hosts a panel of accessibility leaders to discuss future trends for accessibility


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