While much of the broadband conversation often revolves around how to deploy infrastructure, there are additional elements to ensuring that broadband is meeting community goals. For example, broadband must be affordable, and residents must have the digital skills and devices to access the internet in a meaningful way. When each of these elements are in place, residents are able to harness the internet to better their lives and their communities.
Addressing these issues involves thinking through barriers to internet adoption and effective, community-tailored solutions. The following resources provide helpful background information and best practices for digital inclusion:
Mobile technology and home broadband 2021
Pew Research Center explores survey data about how smartphone ownership and home broadband subscriptions have increased among American adults since 2019. The survey also shows that some have problems connecting to the internet at home, some are smartphone-dependent, and some without home broadband have no interest in having home broadband in the future.
The digital inclusion startup manual
This guidebook offers strategies and recommendations for developing digital inclusion programs that address affordable internet access, affordable devices, digital literacy training, technology support, and applications and content development.
Civic trust guide: Equity
This resource defines equity and explores how cities can align technology programs with equity goals. It also includes best practices and a resource list for communities seeking to create equitable communities through technology.