Too often, tech becomes an adults-versus-teens battle, when it’s really an us-and-them issue.
We must imagine solutions together: with youth at the table, and with you at the table — families, teachers, policymakers, engineers.
Together, we can figure out how to thrive in a tech-filled world.
What would it mean to have digital agency — to feel motivated and able to control the way tech fits into your life? We have power that we can reclaim when it comes to tech. We can manage our relationships with technology so that they nurture our well-being.
Individuals shouldn’t have to shoulder the burden of correcting systemic problems alone, but we can plant seeds within ourselves, families, and communities that foster digital agency.
We take inspiration from the founding idea of the Disability Rights movement: “nothing about us, without us.” As we imagine and design interventions to realize digital thriving, we need youth voices guiding, informing, and directing us. We need to pay special attention to - and center - the perspectives of youth with distinct strengths and vulnerabilities, including histories of marginalization.
We take guidance from advisory councils that inform and shape what we do – and youth advisory especially.
Digital thriving is an all hands on deck vision. We need families coaching (versus just refereeing screen time). We need teachers bringing lessons that build digital agency into every classroom. We need policymakers making decisions anchored in research and youth voice. We need clinicians attending directly to the ways tech can amplify different challenges or provide meaningful supports. And we need industry to prioritize thriving over profit.
We are each uniquely positioned to support digital thriving; we are all needed for its success.