Accessibility in Design Systems – keynote panel discussion at Design System Day 2022

The theme for Design System Day 2022 was ‘Inclusivity by Design’, and one key area of inclusivity is accessibility. To help us explore the intersection between accessibility and design systems, we assembled a panel of professionals who have a connection to both accessibility work and design systems. Our panellists come from a varied set of UK civil service, broader public sector and private sector organisations.

Our accessibility panellists:

David Cox, Senior accessibility specialist, Government Digital Service (moderator) Anna E. Cook, Senior designer for accessibility on Azure, Microsoft Michael Cheung, Frontend developer working on accessibility for the design system, NHS Digital Philip Strain, Product lead for accessibility & design systems, Miro Shabana Ali, Accessibility frontend developer, HMRC Sophie Beaumont, Accessibility lead, BBC WebCore

0:00 Introduction

1:33 Panellist biographies

5:00 How important is accessibility to a design system?

12:42 How important is a design system to improving accessibility in an organisation?

22:05 Where does accessibility fit into design system teams and organisations as a whole?

32:29 How do design system teams keep accessibility front-and-centre when transitioning between design and development stages?

39:18 What are some methods for documenting accessibility related information?

46:34 Q&A: How do you persuade accessibility experts to think about the bigger picture of a design system as a whole?

52:44 Q&A: How do we help to shift general attitudes towards accessibility beyond just complying to WCAG?

55:02 Final thoughts from the panellists

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