Return here for our webcast on Feb. 11, 2020, at 9 a.m. (#PewBroadband)
Though access to high-speed, reliable internet is an increasingly critical tool for modern American life, the Federal Communications Commission estimates that at least 21 million Americans still lack broadband access. Other counts suggest this number could be as high as 162 million. Although much of the conversation about expanding broadband access has focused on the federal and local levels, states are taking decisive steps to expand this critical service to communities that lack it or are underserved.
State leaders have recognized that broadband is not just a technology, but a key asset that will shape other policy priorities: access to health care, economic development, and distance-learning programs, among others. On Feb. 11, The Pew Charitable Trusts will host a day-long event unveiling state practices in five categories that are proving effective for expanding broadband: stakeholder engagement, policy framework, planning and capacity building, funding and operations, and program evaluation and evolution.
8:00 a.m.: Breakfast
9:00 a.m.: Opening remarks
9:15 a.m.: An overview of Pew’s research findings
9:45 a.m.: State promising practices
States play a leading role in expanding broadband service to communities that lack it. This panel will highlight how state programs are closing gaps in broadband access through the five categories highlighted above.
11:00 a.m.: Universal truths of broadband
Across states, stakeholders consistently referenced some “universal truths” as central to the success of broadband initiatives. State officials will discuss how these factors contribute to their programs.