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Office of Technology Assessment at the German Bundestag Office of Technology Assessment at the German Bundestag

08.09.2009 | New publication:

Technologies to compensate for disabilities

Productive intervention strategies at the workplace?

Within the framework of social and labour legislation Germany has available in principle numerous instruments for rehabilitation and a long-standing tradition of occupational integration of individuals who are threatened or affected by disabilities. In addition the use of special technologies and technological measures respectively for the inclusion of people with disabilities are important constituents of possible intervention strategies in the work-related realm. They complement provisions of work organisation and facilitation in a combination of barrier-free construction and design, adaptation of workplaces and the use of individualised auxiliary appliances.

The final report of the TAB-project which is now published outlines the potentials of disability compensating technologies (DCT) and trends of innovative and future DCT respectively. On this basis the need for adjustment for an improved utilisation of DCT at the workplace is discussed. In addition the constitutional, social legislative and political framework conditions for the use of DCT at the workplace are illustrated and socioeconomic aspects thematised.

All in all it can be stated based on these analyses that a more comprehensive use of DCT can have positive impacts on employment of both younger and senior people with disabilities, also because the opportunities for activities and social participation in general are increased.

Availability and application of DCT are basic prerequisites for this but are not the only decisive factors. Additional measures are required so that employment for people with disabilities can be generated and maintained in the long term. The preparation of a person with disabilities for an adequately equipped workplace always requires thorough planning and implementation of measures on different levels.