Received: 2020-03-20  |  Accepted: 2020-12-10  |  Published: 2021-03-30


Social determinants of digital exclusion in an ageing society. The case of Poland


The aim of the article is to identify and analyze the social determinants of digital exclusion in an ageing society on the example of Poland. The ageing of societies is nowadays a process recognized as a common trend in the world. Demographic changes cause serious socio-economic transformations. Contemporary social and economic systems are dependent on new technologies. Full participation in a technical environment is possible only for individuals with specific technical, social and psychological competences. The ability to use new information and communication technologies becomes a life necessity. In this context questions about the endogenous and exogenous determiants of digital exclusion in ageing societies, as well as about the impact of the digital technology on the emergence of new dimensions of digital exclusion have been raised. The methodological basis of the study are the theories of social and digital exclusion, as well as science and technology studies. The information bases for the study were the GUS (Central Statistical Office in Poland) reports, Eurostat data base and several statistic reports of non-government organizations in Poland. The analyzed period includes 2015-2019 years in cases where the development trends are discusses and 2019 to show the implications of new technologies impact on polish society. The forecasts reach up to 2060. The theoretical study is based on the analytical and semantic method. It has been shown that the analysis of the effects of digital exclusion in an ageing society should cover a much wider range of factors causing negative consequences. Exogenous factors, i.e. barriers preventing Internet use combined with lack of access to new technologies and lack of digital competence should be treated equally to endogenous factors. Motivation to develop and acquire new skills related to individual life strategies of the elderly plays an equally important role in the process of social self-exclusion. Authors also identifies the main dimensions of digital exclusion and presents them as a multi-factor model: Market - trust - economy; Information policy; Marketing - information - knowledge; Electronic democracy; Quality of life - health. The article provides a theoretical framework for the analysis of new dimensions of digital exclusion in ageing societies. It situates the assessment of new technologies in the social context of the progressing demographic changes implications. It points to new categories of social divides in technologically developed societies.


ageing society, digital divide, digital exclusion, new technologies, sustainable development

JEL classifications

A14 , B55






This is an open access issue and all published articles are licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License


Adamczyk, Monika
John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, Lublin, Poland
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Betlej, Alina
John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, Lublin, Poland
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Journal title

Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Issues





Issue date

March 2021

Issue DOI


ISSN 2345-0282 (online)


VšĮ Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Center, Vilnius, Lithuania


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