Diversity in Society: The Disability Perspective

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 11:25
Location: Seminar 52 (Juridicum)
Oral Presentation
Sarah REKER, TU Munchen, Germany
Christiane KELLNER, TU M√ľnchen Lehrstuhl Diversit√§tssoziologie, Germany
From the perspective of people with disabilities, inequalities can also emerge from spatial segregation, the lack of social contacts or limited economic resources. In order to reduce or even eliminate these disadvantages and increase general well-being, community-based participation as well as decentralisation efforts of exclusive residential homes are essential.

Therefore, the research project “Index for participation development and quality of life for persons with disabilities” (TeLe-Index, 2014-2016), which is anchored at the Technische Universität München in Munich and at a large residential complex and service provider for persons with disabilities in the outskirts of Munich, aims to develop community-based living environments. Two prerequisites are relevant in this process: (1) people with disabilities participate in the social life beyond the large residential and service provision centre and (2) the existing spatial approach needs to be redesigned. The final goal is to create an environment for every citizen regardless of disability, age or ethnic background that accommodates their daily activities and requirements since a diverse society is a society in which different individual needs and wishes emerge.

The UN-Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that was also ratified by Germany postulates the necessity of a user-centred design, especially when it comes to evaluating the individual needs and wishes of all citizens. Therefore, a multidimensional approach is needed. Based on these findings, the structure of the town-like centre will be remodelled to open up the community to all people as well as transform social space. This strategy should lead to equal opportunities and open the way for a much more diverse community.