New Digital Inclusion Survey Issue Briefs Available

Wednesday, October 14th 2015

The Information Policy & Access Center (iPAC) has published several issue briefs based on the 2013 and 2014 Digital Inclusion Surveys and other studies. The issue briefs focus on various roles that public libraries play in building digitally inclusive communities:

  • Access. With 100% of public libraries offering public access to the Internet, public libraries are a vital community link to the Internet, technology, and information. Public libraries are also essential providers of E-government, employment, and educational services and resources.
  • Broadband. Public libraries provide essential services to their communities through broadband technologies. Broadband enables millions of people with no or inadequate connectivity to have access to employment, learning, health, E-government, and other resources through public libraries.
  • Digital Inclusion. As builders of digitally inclusive communities, public libraries are essential community links to the Internet, technology, and information.
  • Digital Literacy. Public libraries serve as critical community-based providers of a range of instruction on digital technologies, materials, and content.
  • E-government. Public libraries provide an essential link between government and citizens. As government information, services, and resources become digital – in many cases, digital only – public libraries serve as critical community gateways to electronic government (E-government) and civic engagement.
  • Employment. In a time of high unemployment in the United States, libraries have provided significant and impactful assistance to job seekers. Estimates show that as many as 30 million Americans rely on public libraries for career search assistance each year.
  • Buildings. While public libraries offer a range of services, resources, and programs to enable digital inclusion, their spaces (size, recent renovation) can impact the ability of libraries to engage in inclusive efforts. 

The issue briefs offer policymakers, stakeholders, and librarians perspectives about the important roles of public libraries as key community players in ensuring digital equity, inclusion, and readiness.