How does technology impact a community-based organization and its service population? By offering technology access through public computer centers as a part of their core mission and programmatic offerings, individual organizations have successfully extended technology access to their most proximate clients. But how might a more comprehensive and coordinated web of computer centers shift the landscape of an economically challenged urban environment? The City of Philadelphia is engaged in a large-scale implementation of a comprehensive computer center network and technology training classes in underserved neighborhoods. Through this coordinated effort, which includes health and social service organizations, recreation centers, libraries, and universities, we increase organizational capacity and create a systematic, citywide effort to bridge the digital divide. This program is unique because its design is rooted in a dedicated group of collaborative stakeholders with an abiding commitment to digital literacy and skills. The authors will examine program structure, implementation strategy, and stakeholder participation, arguing that by leveraging human capital and technology resources we can transform communities.
|Keywords:||Public Technology Access, Program Design, Collaboration, Community-based Organizations|
Program Manager, Office of Innovation and Technology, City of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA
Director of Innovation Management, Office of Innovation and Technology, City of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA
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