Aging in the Digital Age: Conceptualizing Technology Adoption and Digital Inequalities

Jessica Francis, Christopher Ball, Travis Kadylak, Shelia R. Cotten

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In this chapter, we synthesize prior empirical research focused on digital inequalities among older adults. We highlight studies that detail both antecedents and consequences of the digital divide. We also discuss popular theories and models such as the theory of reasoned action, the technology adoption model, and the senior technology adoption model, which have served as the foundation for understanding technology adoption and use among older adults. Despite the prevalence of digital inequalities among older adults, our review points to findings that suggest that when older adults adopt and use information and communication technologies (ICTs) they can experience enhanced quality of life. We conclude this chapter by discussing directions for future research.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAgeing and Digital Technology
Subtitle of host publicationDesigning and Evaluating Emerging Technologies for Older Adults
EditorsBarbara Barbosa Neves, Frank Vetere
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)978-981-13-3693-5
ISBN (Print)978-981-13-3692-8
StatePublished - Jan 9 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Aging
  • Digital divide
  • Digital inequality
  • Information and communication technologies
  • Older adults
  • Technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • General Social Sciences


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