Technology Considerations for Inclusive Events#

When planning an event that will be attended by people with lived experience, event organizers should carefully consider various technology aspects to ensure inclusivity, accessibility, and a seamless experience for all participants.

This section focuses on considerations and recommendations around using different technologies to support the inclusion of people with lived experience at in-person, hybrid, or online events.

Helpful Resources within The Turing Way




Guidelines for Remote Collaboration


Guidance on running remote events

Challenges faced during Hybrid Collaboration


Identifies common barriers faced by hybrid events

Hybrid Events as an Accessibility and Inclusion Strategy#

Hybrid events, by default, prioritize accessibility and the inclusivity of attendees with lived experience, making them the ideal choice to engage an audience of individuals with diverse lived experiences. Online sessions can be better suited to individuals who take part in research as a volunteer and find it difficult to attend in-person events. Conversely, in-person events can make use of local resources to support engagement and may be preferred by others who face barriers to joining an online event.

The integration of both in-person and virtual components ensures that participants can engage in a manner that suits their preferences and circumstances.

The flexibility of hybrid formats recognizes the barriers faced by many people with lived experience. Providing a virtual option can overcome any physical resource barriers presented by in-person only events. This flexibility also accommodates the diverse schedules and responsibilities of potential attendees, and takes steps to acknowledge any additional scheduling challenges that may be faced by people with lived experiences.

Although planning and hosting hybrid events often requires more resources to be successful, by making your event hybrid you can better prioritize accessibility practices and the inclusion of attendees with lived experience. This empowers a wide range of participants to contribute and benefit from your event’s content and community.

If you are planning a hybrid event, please read The Turing Way’s Chapter on Hybrid Collaboration and specifically the Subchapter on Guidelines for Hybrid Collaboration.

Using Email Reminders and Calendar Invitations#

Many of your attendees will maintain a very busy schedule and often take part in multiple different activities. This will be true for both your research, clinical, and lived experience attendees - and everyone may benefit from the support of reminders and calendar invitations for your event.

Calendar invites and email reminders can be especially useful to people with lived experience of health conditions, disabilities, and other experiences that add additional commitments and time constraints to their daily life.

Consider sending both a calendar placeholder invitation for your event, and email reminders the week before, the week of, and the morning of your event. This can help remind your attendees of their registration and help put the important information about your event at the top of their email inbox.

It can also be helpful to utilize the subject line of your email with important information. Consider including the date and title of your event, in both the calendar invitation and any email reminders that you send.

Case Study

The Public and Patient Involvement and Engagement community for Multiple Long-Term Conditions has highlighted the importance of sending out reminder emails the week of the event, and the morning of the event.

This was because medical appointments had often been scheduled after an event’s “Save the Date” had been sent and many community members valued the reminders.

Ensure that any email address you send invitations from is able to contact your attendees (and not flagged as a spam email account). And additionally, ensure that your attendees can respond to an email address or inbox (try to avoid using a “no-reply” email provider when sending invitations).

You may suggest that attendees add your event’s core email address to a list of trusted senders, or you can also ask for feedback from attendees leading up to an event, which allows you to identify if your emails have been received.

Reaching attendees without email access#

Your event may engage communities and people with lived experience who have barriers to accessing email or the internet regularly.

Consider how you will keep in contact with these individuals, and what additional resources and safeguarding your organizers and staff members may need. For example, if attendees cannot access email, what other communication channels can be used. If you are able to send out information and keep in regular contact with the community through the telephone, social media, or a group chat, consider devoting resources towards a “work phone” for organizers so that they do not need to give out their personal phone number to attendees.

If this is the case for your event, it will be very important to source solutions from, and work alongside the community with that specific lived experience when planning your event.

Technology Guides#

Even if the technology used during your event may be considered common or ubiquitous, it is important to recognize that all attendees will have had a different level of experience and exposure to technology.

While many people with lived experience may be experts in the latest technology, this may not be the case for all attendees.

Consider developing and providing tutorials and guides for each different technology tool that your attendees will interact with at your event. This is important for both in-person and especially so for online or hybrid events.

This includes guides for technology such as Zoom, Slido, Slack, and any interactive software such as Miro or Microsoft Whiteboards. Before completing your guide, check if the tool or platform provides any documentation or tutorial material as part of their onboarding. Documentation provided by the developer can often highlight any accessibility features specific to that tool as well as being written for a general audience with no previous experience with the tool.

Ensure that these guides are written in an Easy-Read and/or [{Plain Language}def] format so that they clearly explain both how to access, and how to use any of the technology required to engage at your event.

These guides should be provided before your event starts to allow attendees to familiarize themselves with the technology and troubleshoot any issues ahead of time.

Although you may not be able to individually check with each attendee, providing guides and allocating time during your event for participants to learn and familiarize themselves with the tool can help to ensure that all attendees are comfortable using the platforms and tools of your event.


You may want to consider how you will ensure that all participants are able to access any tools or platforms.

For example, by including an icebreaker or introductory activity that is completed by attendees.

What to check the day of the event#

As part of hosting, is it important to make time before the event starts to ensure that the technology supports you planned for are working and able to be implemented.

For example:

  • Check that any slides or presentations that will be shown during your event are legible and able to be displayed on your equipment.

  • Check that any closed captioning software that you are using is functional and that the transcripts are able to be displayed and accessed by attendees. If you are using live (human) captioning (which is more accurate than AI captioning and provides access in real time) or sign language interpreters, make sure connections to these people are functioning.

  • Run through any slide or presentation changes to check that any video or slide transitions do not display bright flashes which present a health risk and can trigger photosensitive epilepsy

  • Check that audio induction loops are working and accessible to any attendees who need them.

  • Test the internet, cameras or recording equipment, and lighting.

  • Ensure that wifi and cellular networks are accessible throughout the venue for any attendees who may need to check in with carers or other support staff who are not present at your event.

  • Ensure that there is clear guidance that is readily accessible to attendees in the event of a technical issue.

Because this is not an exhaustive list, it is important to collaborate with participants with lived experience to identify and implement relevant accessibility practices. They can often assist you with knowledge, insights, and strategies based on what they have learned from attending and organizing events themselves.

Where possible, involve representatives with lived experience in your event planning and work with a community to ensure that any barriers introduced by technology use at your event can be addressed and mitigated.

This can help your event create an inclusive and accessible environment, and ensure that individuals with lived experiences are able to fully participate and contribute to your event.