Robin Christopherson, Head of Digital Inclusion
Robin is Head of Digital Inclusion and part of the globally-acclaimed accessibility and tech team of AbilityNet and has spoken at numerous events in recent years. Robin is himself blind but effortlessly enthralls the audience with deft demonstrations of good and bad practice in website and mobile accessibility.
After Cambridge University, Robin worked as an IT instructor for the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) and became a founding member of AbilityNet in 1998. In 2003 he began AbilityNet’s accessibility consultancy team which is now globally acclaimed as being leading experts in the field specialising in accessibility auditing and disabled user testing, as well as helping clients design attractive websites that are both accessible and easy to use by all.
Tech4Good Special Award 2016
Robin was recently awarded the Tech4Good Special Award 2016, announced in July by Liz Williams, Head of Education at BT. The Award recognises Robin's longstanding contributon to inclusive design and digital accessibility, most notably through the highly engaging speeches and presentations he gives around the world. The Award has previously been conferred on Prof Stephen Hawking, Dame Steve Shirley and Jimmy Wales.
Despite being blind Robin uses technology very effectively - using speech output to access computers, the internet, his iPhone and many other technologies to assist him in his work. More importantly he has a first-hand appreciation of the importance of good web and mobile design and its impact on both accessibility and usability for every customer.
Robin also has courtroom experience as an expert technical witness in the area of assistive technology and in software, systems and website accessibility. In addition, he advises companies on their obligations under the Equality Act and the Disability Equality Duty – including the evaluation of case specific reasonable adjustment.
Robin furthers his mission to raise awareness and advocate for digital inclusion through projects including blogging on AbilityNet’s website, numerous guest posts and articles elsewhere (such as the recent column in The Times Diversity Supplement), publishing AbilityNet’s State of the eNation Reports and by being an active member of leading professional organisations such as the Guild of Accessible Web Designers, the International Association of Accessibility Professionals and the Cabinet Office Digital Inclusion Forum.
Robin has a full public speaking schedule in the UK, Europe and the US – delivering 53 separate presentations, masterclasses and webinars in 2015. He effortlessly and effectively challenges any preconceptions people may have about the potential of technology to change and even transform people's lives regardless of ability or environment. With his own impairment he provides an excellent first-hand example of the choices we can provide for all our customers and users if we simply design with an eye for inclusion.
UK Digital Leaders Public Figure of the Year 2015
In 2015 Robin came runner-up in the UK Digital Leaders Public Figure of the Year Award - coming second to the government’s own digital champion Baroness Martha-Lane Fox. He is also a vital part of the AbilityNet team that won the UK Digital Charity Award.
Judge, Global Mobile Awards 2016
Robin is also very proud to be a judge for the Global Mobile Awards 2016 being held in Barcelona in February 2016.
For audience comments on his presentations please just Google his name.
Follow Robin on Twitter @usa2day