November 2, 2022
All items are in US/Pacific time
8:00 AM – 8:40 AM
WELCOME & KEYNOTE – Creating an Economy that Works for Everyone
Vint Cerf, Shamina Singh
In our globally connected world, an inclusive and sustainable digital economy is a cornerstone for peace, prosperity, and progress. A global economy in which all are included must be built upon digital equity, trusted technology, and continuous innovation. Mastercard’s Center for Inclusive Growth works to achieve this by empowering small to medium-sized businesses, supporting female entrepreneurs, tackling racial inequities, and using data-driven insights to build connected communities and deliver positive social impact. Ms. Singh shares her vision for inclusive growth and the transformational path we need to take to achieve truly shared prosperity.
8:45 AM – 9:45 AM
PANEL #1 – An Internet Built for Personal Safety and Security: Who is Responsible and How Do We Do It?
Amy VanDeVelde, Sheri Osborn, Debora Plunkett, Karen Renaud, Yvette Renteria, Roy Want
As more and more aspects of our lives go online, responsible technologists, policymakers, and digital inclusion advocates must create simple, effective, and user-friendly ways to keep consumers safe on the network. Issues in this area include control over personal content and data, device accessibility, reducing bias in machine learning and AI algorithms, user interface, usability innovations, and ways to combat the rise of disinformation.
9:50 AM – 10:50 AM
PANEL #2 – How Do We Define Broadband?
Vint Cerf, Christophe Diot, Mei Lin Fung, Matthew R. Rantanen
As governments around the world set goals for broadband access, how do we define broadband? Without clear guidelines defining speed, quality, and what “service” means, policymakers cannot effectively oversee Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and ensure communities are being served appropriately.
With billions of dollars in federal funding at stake, we need a comprehensive and clear definition of broadband service – one that accounts for the key role Internet access plays in daily life. This panel discusses the technical details and policy ramifications of defining broadband.
10:55 AM – 11:55 AM
PANEL #3 – Digital Equity: How Will We Know When We’ve Arrived?
Elizabeth M. Belding
What does it mean to reduce the digital divide and alleviate the issues associated with digital inequity? How will we know that progress is being made? What measurement infrastructure needs to be in place to successfully measure and map the change in broadband coverage, capacity, quality, and cost over time to evaluate progress? How could a community detect reversions to inequitable situations?
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
PANEL #4 – Funding Broadband for All: From Sporadic to Sustainable
Samantha Schartman-Cycyk, Kathryn de Wit, Joshua Edmonds, Mai-Ling Garcia, Karen Mossberger
Funding to support digital equity has long been inconsistent, undependable, and difficult to obtain, making it hard for organizations to continue providing much needed community services sustainably. We are in a moment in the U.S. with unprecedented funding going to digital equity and inclusion programming. It is highly unlikely this level of investment, or even lower levels of investment from these federal sources, will be available again and these funding levels may never be seen in other countries.
In order for communities to continue supporting residents to connect and use the Internet in all the ways it can benefit them, digital equity must be reframed within a more dependable funding and business framework. Digital inclusion as a social service delivery model, with a focus on how states and counties can mitigate the rising costs of delivering social services through partnerships and coordination with the community, is one way to provide superior service and cost savings that can permanently fund digital inclusion programs and strategies.
1:05 PM – 1:50 PM
PANEL #5 – Creating the Equity-Focused Workforce of the Future
Angela Thi Bennett, Dr. Traci Morris, Dr. Fallon Wilson
Solving complex problems in our cross-functional world calls for students and workforces with interdisciplinary skills. This is particularly true in the quest for digital equity, which relies on technologists to create the possible, policymakers to develop innovative solutions to impactful and accessible funding, and digital inclusion advocates to ensure that solutions can be adopted and used by the community. Education between these groups is siloed today, feeding into a fragmented workforce and problem-solving infrastructure. The educational pipeline for the future of digital equity will create passionate, cross-disciplinary experts.
1:50 PM – 2:05 PM
Keynote – Ensuring Digital Equity in our $42B Infrastructure Spend
Angela Thi Bennett
As the first-ever digital equity director at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) Angela Thi Bennett will direct the allocation of $2.75 billion from the Digital Equity Act and help develop guidelines for states to equitably use these funds. Ms. Thi Bennett shares her insights about ensuring digital equity for the largest influx of government funding ever dedicated to broadband infrastructure.