Dana Schurmans is an PhD candidate in Communication Sciences at the Université Catholique Louvain (UCL) and the Free University of Brussels (VUB). In her doctoral thesis she explores the emerging narratives of digital inequalities from the perspective of youth (15 – 26y) issued from poor Brussels neighbourhoods. Doing so, she aims to give voice to disadvantaged communities who are not traditionally not heard.
Currently, she is involved in the IDEALiC research project (2015-2019), for the Belgian Science Policy Office. This project aims to set the new scene of e-inclusion for the upcoming years. In order to do so, Dana carries out an empirical study that examines experiences of e-inclusion from a life course perspective and a user media profile viewpoint. In particular, she analyses to what extent digital skills and the ability to deal with digital media in an autonomous and strategic way are of increasing importance to ensure one’s full societal participation.
In addition to her academic work, Dana is active as Digital inclusion expert for Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Young Professionals Network (ACP YPN). In this context, she has influenced EU legislation on the topic to ensure digital policy remains inclusive irrespective of race, ethnicity, economic status and more, has been invited on panels on ICT4D and she has written blogposts. Striving for equality in a digitalized world are both part of her vocation and avocation.