Published on March 25, 2009
Broadband- A tool for civic engagement and sustainability? March 24, 2009 Webinar Paul Treadwell Cornell Cooperative Extension Distance Learning Consultant
What is Broadband • High speed data transmission • Always on connection • Encompasses a variety of technologies: ▫ DSL ▫ Cable modem ▫ WiFi ▫ Broadband satellite
Why Broadband Matters • High speed internet access can: ▫ Improve government efficiency and communication ▫ Provide access to educational opportunities ▫ Engage citizens ▫ Facilitate better medical care ▫ Narrow the digital divide ▫ Expand employment opportunities ▫ Foster Innovation
Broadband and rural communities • 38% rural homes have broadband • 57% urban • 60% suburban • Other factors affecting access: ▫ Income ▫ Ease/prevalence of public access ▫ Digital literacy
The Digital Divide • the gap between people with effective access to digital and information technology and those with very limited or no access at all. • Is a kind of capability deprivation ▫ As the “world” moves online, those who aren’t are excluded. Access to the benefits of an online world are removed /denied
Why now • Renewed interest and funding: ▫ National Presidents broadband stimulus funding $7+ Billion for broadband development ▫ New York State
The Civic Net
More than bandwidth or access • The fuss about broadband, then, extends beyond access to information to active participation in the online commons ▫ Broadband: What’s All the Fuss About? Pew Internet and American Life Project
Marketplace and/or Commons • 2 ways of viewing the internet ▫ Marketplace Access to goods Buying and selling ▫ Commons Access to ideas Interaction and exchange
How do you see broadband? • What role can it play?
Broadband Enabled Services • E-government ▫ Providing access to government information ▫ Providing space for engagement • E-commerce ▫ Access to the global marketplace • Technology training / digital literacy/ civic literacy
Case study – Ontario county • Ontario County e-government ▫ http://www.co.ontario.ny.us/ ▫ Access to governmental information ▫ Online survey for community input
Case study – Blue Smoke • E-Commerce ▫ Blue Smoke Salsa https://www.bluesmokesalsa.com/ Case Study (pdf)
Case Study – Engaged Youth • Civic learning ▫ Engaged Youth http://www.engagedyouth.org/
Case Study – Squeaky Wheel • Digital/Media Literacy ▫ Squeaky Wheel http://www.squeaky.org/
Barriers to adoption • Availability • Cost • Exclusion ▫ Literacy • Security
Sustainable communities • Broadband should be a component of a platform for sustainability ▫ Connecting rural communities to the world Tele-work E-Commerce Flow of ideas ▫ Sustaining locality Online interactions focused on local issues Local government access
Civic participation • Bringing it back home ▫ Tools for online engagement National Coalition for Dialog and Deliberation http://www.thataway.org/ my.barackobama.com http://my.barackobama.com/ ▫ National project connecting local participants
Education • Broadband opens up a channel to media rich educational opportunities ▫ MIT OpenCourseware http://ocw.mit.edu ▫ ScienceVideos http://sciencehack.com/ ▫ Youtube Teachertube http://www.teachertube.com/
Opportunities • Resurgence of funding opportunities creates a space for innovative programming • Current Extension programming ▫ National e-Commerce Extension Initiative http://srdc.msstate.edu/ecommerce/ ▫ Connecting rural communities ▫ Others?
Innovating • Digital literacy For community For educators Skills for an online world • Community brainstorming ▫ Games to spark planning around technology Useful Games http://www.usefulgames.co.uk/
Appropriate Technology • Defining “appropriate” relative to ICT ▫ Impacts on community The introduction of new technology and tools is a debatable topic. How do we deliberate about technology? Mostly, we don’t Technology “happens” Is this the best approach?
The value of open networks • “Strangely enough, digital technologies are forcing us to recognize the power of the collective and social” - David Bollier ▫ The Commons as a New Sector of Value-Creation http://www.onthecommons.org/content.php?id=18 13 • Open standards-Open source-Open networks
Resources • Documents, sites and case studies referenced in this presentation are available online at: ▫ http://ccedigitaldivide.pbwiki.com/March24Webi nar
Contact • Paul Treadwell ▫ Distance Learning Consultant ▫ Cornell Cooperative Extension ▫ 356 Roberts Hall ▫ Cornell University ▫ Ithaca, NY 14853 ▫ email@example.com ▫ http://treadwell.cce.cornell.edu/elearn
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