Digital divide narrows but digital needs broaden

23 Jan

In the UK the number of citizens on the wrong side of the digital divide may have been more than halved over the last 5 years but that still leaves a vast number who are about to find that, in the cause of cheaper, more-efficient and sometimes better public services, the government’s ‘digital by default’ policy will soon start to hit home.

Moreover, of those citizens who are not currently online-enabled (with neither the connectivity nor the skills) the majority are those for whom easier access to  public services, cheaper living, access to jobs, less hassle, better healthcare and education  are high priorities.

Tackling the challenges of the ‘doubly disconnected’ (economically and socially disconnected citizens) are 15,000 volunteers led by Helen Milner’s UK Online Centres Foundation.  Together they are delivering vast benefits – for the life chances of individuals and, economically, for all of us.

We thought it timely to update our story from 2007.   Read Helen’s account of the continuing need for greater digital inclusion in her report for Groupe Intellex ‘The scale of digital exclusion in the UK

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