Photo by Dan O' Neil
In an effort to fully understand and determine the barriers to technology use for the underserved in Chicago, the City of Chicago and its partners, the MacArthur Foundation and the State of Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, commissioned the University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Iowa to conduct a digital excellence study to identify areas in Chicago with low Internet use.
The resulting report, Digital Excellence in Chicago: A Citywide View of Technology Use, provides data on information technology access and use in order to define relevant gaps and provide a baseline for evaluating progress in the future. In other words, the study shows statistically where and why the “digital divide” exists in Chicago. The study was designed by researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Iowa and is based on a random-sample telephone survey of 3453 Chicago residents aged 18 or older. The survey was conducted by the University of Iowa Hawkeye Poll in June and July 2008.
The "Digital Excellence in Chicago" report will help the City and the broader community to strategically target digital inclusion efforts and change conditions and awareness in the Chicago communities that either do not have access to technology, or do have access but have not achieved digital excellence. The initial results have informed the City’s approach to digital excellence initiatives, including the Digital Excellence Action Agenda.