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Like Politics, Successful Digital Inclusion Is Local.

  • Broadcast in Internet



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Digital inclusion - closing the technology gap between the have's and have not's - may be a priority for some federal and state agencies, but the delivery of measurable results happens mostly at the local level. This is particularly true for broadband. Too many variations between cultures, geography, economic priorities, languages and other factors exist for cookie cutter attempts to get underserved constituents online AND maximizing broadband technology.

A Broadband Technologies Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant to the City of Chicago launched activities to educate and motivate constituents within nine Smart Communities to use the Net. Karen Mossberger, Ph.D., School of Public Affairs, Arizona State University, describes the impacts of programs that included workshops, advertising, skills training, and community portals. Dr. Mossberger's team conducted surveys in 2008, 2011 and 2013 to compare adoption and usage between the Smart Communities and the rest of Chicago. 

Listeners learn some of the how-to's for creating and implementing effective digital inclusion programs. In addition, Dr. Mossberger reveals some of the trendsetting methods she used to measure the results that adoption programs produce, as well as upcoming research that will shed more light on how to create successful programs.