NCDIT Secretary Eric Boyette Announces North Carolina Broadband Indices at IEI Forum

Raleigh, N.C. — Eric Boyette, Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Information Technology (DIT) and State Chief Information Officer, announced the launch of the new North Carolina Broadband Indices and accompanying visualizations of the data today at the Institute for Emerging Issues “ReCONNECT to Technological Opportunity Forum.”

The North Carolina Broadband Indices (Indices) are two unique measures designed to create a more accurate picture of the state’s broadband access, adoption, and the resulting digital divide. The Indices will inform the design of programs, policies and tools to align with the specific needs of each community by helping to demonstrate need, identify the most beneficial types of investments, and determine where resources should be deployed.

“One of our goals as an office is to create a better picture of North Carolina’s broadband access limitations and opportunities,” said Jeff Sural, director of the Broadband Infrastructure Office. “We are working toward ensuring all North Carolinians have access to affordable, reliable high-speed internet service. These indices are essential for gaining a better understanding of the areas we serve and the challenges they face when it comes to accessing and adopting high-speed connectivity.  With a clearer picture of where we stand as a state, we are better equipped  to work with communities and our public and private partners to address these challenges.”

The Indices will help state and local leaders, private providers, and advocates understand the current state of broadband access, adoption and the digital divide in communities across the state and to visualize the  specific challenges, opportunities, and key factors contributing to the digital divide for the areas they serve. The Indices will then assist leaders in  designing tailored solutions that meet the specific needs of their communities and increasing their residents’ opportunities to participate and thrive in today’s digital economy.

NCDIT’s Broadband Infrastructure Office commissioned Roberto Gallardo, PhD, a renowned broadband researcher from Purdue University, to create the North Carolina Broadband Indices in 2019. Data on where broadband is and isn’t available is notoriously underreported and thus does not fully depict the reality for many North Carolinians.

“These indices will give us great benchmarks for measuring change over time in broadband access and adoption, and help us assess our progress in closing the digital divide,” said Amy Huffman, Digital Inclusion and Policy Manager for the Broadband Infrastructure Office.

The North Carolina Broadband Indices are available at https://ncbroadband.gov/indices.

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