The access and usage of information technologies is an essential part for the personal and professional qualification in today’s information society. These aspects are invigorated by current studies which subsume that an increasing number of employment positions need access to information sources on the internet. Furthermore these studies show that the access to digital Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) becomes more difficult for humans in rural than urban regions. In consequence there is a high risk for rural populations to get handicapped in comparison to urban populations, especially by using IC-Technologies as instrument for “Lifelong learning”.
To antagonize the unbalance between rural and urban regions, the European project RURALeNTER gains this topic into the focus of its research. The initial point encompasses an analysis of the current situation, in particular for the use of IC-Technologies for digital learning in rural areas of European countries. The researches were applied in Greek, Austria, Rumania and Spain, which representing different European subcultures. In dependence of the specific environmental criteria, a web-portal has to be developed which allows adults access to ICT services and contents that are optimized specifically for rural areas. In combination with a general admitted training strategy, users get introduced in using ICT services and the advantages for their education. This method should commit sustainable information competences to the adults in rural areas, to avoid the loss of connection to the information society.
The Fraunhofer IGD is primary responsible for the development of the RURALeNTER web-portal. Next to the technical challenges, it is necessary to conceptualize an adequate interface for users to the portal, to ensure an easy access to ICT services and contents also for inexperienced IT-Users.