For the past year and a half, we at OCLC’s WebJunction have been guiding and documenting local leadership teams in nine pilot communities who are figuring out how to increase information technology access and use (referred to as "digital inclusion") in their communities. The project is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Service (IMLS) and based upon Building Digital Communities: Framework for Action (The Framework), also funded by IMLS. The Framework recommends community-wide digital inclusion efforts involve a variety of sectors. Local leadership teams representing government, libraries and nonprofits lead the nine pilot communities. Our pilot communities have taught us many lessons, including:
- Many local leaders tend to understand the need for broadband infrastructure but not the need for home broadband access, public broadband access, and digital literacy skills.
- Explaining the importance of information technology access and use is complex.
- Local government involvement is essential.
The Internet Is Important To Everyone aims to bring attention to the impact broadband has on our lives, our health, our government, our jobs, and our education while considering who among us does not use the internet and who does not have home broadband access. The infographic explains why Americans are not using the internet or purchasing home internet service and offers actions our communities can take.
We welcome everyone to share this infographic, particularly with community leaders working on economic development, workforce, civic engagement, education and health.
If you would like to learn more about digital inclusion visit oc.lc/digitalinclusion.