Universally Designed Beacon-Assisted Indoor Navigation for Emergency Evacuations
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Original versionGiannoumis GA, Gjøsæter T, Radianti J, Paupini C: Universally Designed Beacon-Assisted Indoor Navigation for Emergency Evacuations. In: Murayama Y, Velev D, Zlateva P. Information Technology in Disaster Risk reduction - Third IFIP TC5 DCITDRR International Conference ITDRR 2018 Held at the 24th IFIP World Computer Congress, WCC 2018 Poznan, Poland, September 20-21, 2018 Revised Selected Papers, 2019. Springer Nature p. 120-129 https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-32169-7_9
The United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) obligates national governments to ensure the protection and safety of persons with disabilities in emergency situations. This article examines the application and accessibility of state-of-the-art ICT solutions in emergency situations. Research has indeed shown that the design and implementation of evacuation procedures in emergency situations play a critical role in ensuring personal safety and protection. While research has examined the experiences of persons including persons with disabilities in emergency situations, research has yet to examine fully the role that cutting-edge indoor navigation solutions including, for example, Internet of Things (IoT), mobile device and big data analytics hardware and software, in simultaneously ensuring the safety and protection of persons with disabilities and everyone from a universal design perspective. Emerging research on IoT indoor navigation solutions has shown that networks of low-energy Bluetooth (BLE) beacons paired with a mobile application provide a usable wayfinding solution for persons with disabilities in laboratory and controlled experimental settings. This article fills this gap by asking “To what extent can BLE networks ensure the safety and protection of persons with disabilities and everyone in simulated emergency situations? Data from a multimethod study of user experience in emergency evacuations shows that BLE beacon networks could provide a more accessible user experience for persons with disabilities and everyone to evacuate indoor environments during emergency situations.