University of Antwerp on February 11, 2022

About the conference series

The Unlimited! conferences are an opportunity to discuss research, practice, policy and technological innovation regarding the accessibility of live events and broadcasts. Stakeholders from varying backgrounds and domains come together to pinpoint challenges, share best practices and explore convergences and new collaborations in a growing range of services and products that make live events and broadcasts more accessible for diverse audiences – think of audio description, audio surtitling, audio subtitling, surtitling and sign language. The first Unlimited! conference was organized by the TricS research group of the University of Antwerp on 26 April 2016. The second Unlimited! conference was held in Barcelona on 6 June 2018. It was organized by the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) and the EU-funded project Accessible Culture and Training (ACT), in which the University of Antwerp was a partner.

This year, Unlimited! 3 will be preceded by the OPEN Forum on 10 February, an exhibition and networking event around the theme of Media Accessibility.

Call for papers Unlimited 3! Innovation for Access: New Interactions

The provision of accessibility services for live events is gaining prominence throughout the world. It is a vibrant and dynamic domain, replete with innovative approaches.

Unlimited 3! will contribute to the new opportunities created by these innovative trends, by exploring recent developments in access services such as audio description, audio surtitling, audio subtitling, surtitling for the hearing impaired, and sign language.

Two key seem to be driving the field forward: technology and creativity. Technological innovations have always been in the provision of pre-recorded access services, but lately technology’s role is growing in live access as well. On the other hand, new creative approaches to live access are developing rapidly; approaches that look for new ways to integrate accessibility into creation processes and that focus on engagement and on creating experiences for all audiences.

However, these new opportunities also pose major challenges. Stakeholders have to learn to navigate the variations and complexities that characterize this approach. These complexities create new opportunities, but also challenge all parties involved, requiring them to move out of their comfort zone, go beyond their individual expertise and foster new, interdisciplinary collaboration.

All these developments are giving rise to new types of practices, new types of collaboration, new professional profiles, and new requirements for training.

The third Unlimited! symposium aims to explore these challenges and innovative solutions in live accessibility and bring together stakeholders to share experiences. We invite contributions that share best practices and new research on accessible theatre, ballet, hybrid performances, conferences, sports and any other live (cultural) event or types of performances that are (or should be) made accessible in any part of the world.

Important dates

  • Opening call for papers: 31 August 2021
  • Abstract submission deadline: 4 October 2021
  • Notification of acceptance: mid-November
  • Opening registration: October

For further details, please visit: https://www.opentoegankelijk.be/en/activities/unlimited-3-innovation-for-access-new-interactions