Inequality; Digital Technologies; Social Exclusion; Digital Divide; Internet; Older Adults
Seifert Alexander, Cotten Shelia R, Xie Bo (2020), A Double Burden of Exclusion? Digital and Social Exclusion of Older Adults in Times of COVID-19, in The Journals of Gerontology: Series B
KönigRonny, SeifertAlexander (2020), From Online to Offline and Vice Versa: Change in Internet Use in Later Life Across Europe, in Frontiers in Sociology
, 5(4), 1-12.
Seifert Alexander, Harari Gabriella M. (2019), Mobile data collection with smartphones, Springer International Publishing, Cham, 1-4.
Seifert Alexander, Rössel Jörg (2019), Digital Participation, Springer International Publishing, Cham, 1-4.
Hofer Matthias, Hargittai E, Büchi M, Seifert Alexander (2019), Older Adults’ Online Information Seeking and Subjective Well-Being: The Moderating Role of Internet Skills, in International Journal of Communication
, 13, 4426-4443.
Seifert Alexander, Hofer Matthias, Rössel Jörg (2018), Older adults’ perceived sense of social exclusion from the digital world, in Educational Gerontology
, 44(12), 775-785.
Digital technologies play an increasingly important role in all societies. More and more services are digitally available, but access to these services requires Internet access or technical knowledge of hardware and software use. A lack of involvement in this new digital society introduces new forms of social inequality and social exclusion. Older adults are particularly at risk of exclusion because they frequently are unfamiliar with today’s technologies, and they use digital technologies such as the Internet less frequently than younger adults; they also have to invest more effort into learning new technologies. Little is known about the daily experienced and subjectively perceived social exclusion of older adults regarding the non-use or lower use of digital technologies. This research project examines the consequences of the digital transformation of our daily lives by focusing on whether older adults are actually excluded and subjectively feel excluded from society when they do not use new digital technologies. Overall the project has three main research goals: (1) to examine the experienced barriers of use/non-use of digital technologies in daily life; (2) to explore individuals’ feelings of social exclusion; and (3) to analyze the predictors of experienced and perceived social exclusion. To do so, we have proposed a mixed-methods approach with three modules. First, we will use already available survey data to identify the sociodemographic predictors for social exclusion regarding the non-use of the Internet; second, we will conduct an exploratory intensive diary study using an ambulatory assessment approach to evaluate daily experienced and subjectively perceived social exclusion from the use of digital technologies; third, we will conduct a representative survey of people over 18 years of age living in Switzerland to evaluate the social determinants of experienced and subjectively perceived social exclusion of the Swiss population on the use of digital technologies. The project will improve our understanding of the ways digital technologies affect the daily lives of older adults and their sense of social exclusion. The project will combine new methods of mobile data collection in real life with quantitative population surveys, which is a promising mix of methods that is still unusual in sociology research. The results will enrich scientific and public discussions about the potentials and barriers of digital technologies in Swiss society.