I was looking for a job, and then I found a job
And heaven knows I’m miserable now
The Smiths, “Heaven knows I’m miserable now”
Yesterday the professional association of experts for accessibility indroduced itself to the public in a brief online conference.
The IAAP (International Association of Accessibility Professionals) will soon be available in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (Liechtenstein included hopefully) with the new chapter IAAP DACH (DACH = short form for the three countries). It will offer all accessibility experts in those countries the opportunity to network, train and certify and help companies to keep track to quality standards.
The IAAP DACH’s Goals are in their own Words
- Define professional core competencies of experts for digital accessibility.
- Offer a generally accepted procedure for certifying the accessibility of digital products, content and services.
- Promote a general awareness of accesible design of digital products, content and services.
- Offer information and knowledge exchange among all persons interested in accessibility in the German-speaking area.
- Be the link to the international expert community in accessibility.
You can find the IAAP DACH on Twitter as well.
The association wants to create the job description “Accessibility Expert” in the German speaking area of Europe and set quality standards for this new job description through training, certification and knowledge exchange. There have been several approaches to that already throughout the past through different organisations. But unfortunately they all have failed to establish common standards in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
- T Systems: One of the biggest service providers of digital products in Germany
- Hochschule der Medien: Stuttgart based University of Applied Sciences with focus on media and their applications.
- axes4 GmbH: A Swiss company based in Zürich specialized on accessible documents.
- DVBS e.V.: The German Association of Blind and Visually Impaired People in Study and Work.
- E.J. Krause & Associates, Inc.: An international trade show and conference organizer with headquarters in Washington, D.C.
- Hilfsgemeinschaft Blinde und Sehgeschädigte Österreichs: An independent, non-profit association, founded to improve the living conditions of blind and severely visually impaired people.
- Johannes Kepler Universität Linz: The Institute “Integrated Studying” of the Johannes Kepler University Linz (JKU) deals with accessibility and assistive technologies (AT) in research, development and teaching within the framework of computer science.
- Mobile & Wireless Forum: Ein internationaler Verband von Firmen mit Interesse in mobiler und kabelloser Kommunikation, 5G und die Evolution des Internets der Dinge.
For me personally, this sounds very helpful and is in my opinion overdue. And it’s a good start to have a wider network for all the people dedicated to web and software accessibility.
I myself will definitely try to achieve a certification. Maybe you will, too?