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#499 Online: Unpacking Chicago’s Digital Divide


Devon Braunstein (she/her), Digital Inclusion Policy Fellow, Office of the Mayor, City of Chicago

The digital divide in Chicago is not what it seems: The majority of Chicago households (~80%) are connected to the internet. Yet, deep disparities exist at the neighborhood level. In Chicago’s least connected communities, more than 40% of residents don’t have internet at home.

With broadband infrastructure nearly ubiquitous throughout the city, why do so many households still lack high-speed, reliable internet?

In this talk, we will review internet connectivity trends in Chicago from a socio-economic perspective, dig into the meaning of digital equity and inclusion, discuss the City’s progress to date, and lay out a strategy for achieving digital equity by placing community members at the center of the work. We will also discuss the approach of the Chicago Digital Equity Council and discuss ways to get involved in closing the digital divide once and for all.

ASL This event will not have an American Sign Language interpreter.