This paper was written by Casey Canfield and her collaborators who are part of the UM System Broadband Initiative.
The highlights include:
- We find the internet intervention was associated with quality-of-life benefits.
- Change in employment, education and health internet use was unrelated to service quality.
- Measurement challenges affect evaluations of interventions in underserved communities.
- Future studies should consider appropriate outcomes, recruitment, and survey timing.
Read the article here: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308596123000101
Missourians have until January 13 to file challenges to newly released maps of broadband coverage to be considered when determining Missouri’s share of federal broadband funding. The Office of Broadband Development encourages Missourians to make sure their homes, businesses, and communities are correctly represented on the maps to ensure locations are eligible for funding and receive their fair share.
The FCC map will determine how much of more than $42 billion in funding will come to the state through the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program, a component of the Infrastructure, Investment, and Jobs Act (IIJA). In 2023, Missouri will use BEAD funding for its Connecting All Missourians initiative, which aims to provide high-quality internet to every home and business statewide. Read more…
Barriers & Opportunities
Research shows that internet access and use increases rural economic and community development. However, rural areas are at a disadvantage when it comes to providing and supporting device ownership.
The purpose of this brief is to raise awareness of the difficulties rural communities face when trying to address the device ownership issue.
Register now for free Aug. 20 event.
- Published: Friday, July 22, 2022
MARYVILLE, Mo. – Teams of students from across the University of Missouri System are competing to develop plans for supplying access to affordable high-speed internet to residents and businesses in northwestern Missouri.
The teams will present their plans 9 a.m.-noon Saturday, Aug. 20, at the Mozingo Event Center, 1 Fall Drive, Maryville. The event, which will also be livestreamed, is free and open to the public.
“These students are taking on a real-world challenge — an actual community facing the problem of inadequate broadband access — and coming up with potential plans for workable public-private partnership (P3) models,” said Anthony Luppino, a member of the UM System Broadband Initiative(opens in new window) steering committee and director of Entrepreneurship Programs at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law.
The three teams comprise students from various disciplines, including engineering, business, law and computer science. Prior to the presentations, a five-person panel will judge the proposals on their quality and feasibility.
Proposals must address strategies for increasing adoption of internet-based technologies and include a plan to finance expansion of the community’s broadband infrastructure. The teams’ plans may be used by the community in their broadband expansion efforts.
“The P3 Competition is a creative way to get the next generation of students to engage with communities to solve real-time challenges and improve economic opportunities, while building skills necessary in today’s globally competitive market,” said Kimberly Mildward, economic development planner with the Northwest Missouri Regional Council of Governments.
Using an approach outlined in the UM System Broadband Initiative’s Digitally Connected Community Guide(opens in new window), the student teams hope to provide useful ideas for bringing affordable high-speed internet to the region and encouraging the use of broadband applications.
Attendance at the Aug. 20 event, in person or via livestream, is free. Register in advance at umurl.us/P3Event(opens in new window). On-site registration starts at 8:30 a.m.
The event and student competition are sponsored by the H&R Block Foundation and the City of Maryville.
Contacts for more information on the competition and broadband planning in northwestern Missouri:
- Kim Mildward, 660-582-5121, ext. 2.
- Joe Lear, consultant, UM System Digitally Connected Community Guide initiatives, email@example.com(opens in new window), 573-884-4655.
- Anthony Luppino, firstname.lastname@example.org(opens in new window), 816-235-6165.
Writer: Katherine Foran
Written by Andrew L. Afflerbach, Ph.D., P.E.
CTC Technology & Energy
As state and local governments and their partners plan to invest billions of dollars in federal funding to build broadband infrastructure, choosing the best technology will have significant long-term implications. Federal policymakers have addressed this subject to some degree: For example, the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program’s notice of funding opportunity (NOFO) preferences fiber over fixed wireless.
To aid state and local policymakers, this report offers an engineering analysis of fixed-wireless technologies and their suitability for delivering broadband service in various environments. The report addresses a range of critical technology and cost considerations related to fixed-wireless networks—and, as a point of comparison, to fiber-to-the-premises networks.
At a high level, the report concludes the following:
- Fixed-wireless technologies will continue to improve but will not match the performance of fiber-optic networks—primarily because the existing and potential bandwidth of fiber is thousands of times higher than wireless. Also, fixed-wireless networks have inherent capacity limitations that sharply limit the number of users on a network using a given amount of spectrum.
- Fixed-wireless network coverage is adversely affected by line-of-sight obstructions (including buildings and seasonal foliage) and weather. While a fiber network can physically connect every household in a service area (and deliver predictable performance), it is significantly more complex for a fixed-wireless network to deliver a line of sight to every household in a service area.
- Scalability is a critical challenge to fixed-wireless deployments, both technically and financially. A given amount of wireless spectrum is capable of supporting a given amount of network capacity. If the number of network users increases or users need more bandwidth, the network operator must increase the spectrum (which is both scarce and extremely expensive—and may not be possible), upgrade the technology, or add antennas. It is challenging to design a fixed wireless network that will provide sufficient, robust upstream and downstream capacity and reach all the addresses in unserved areas.
- The fastest fixed-wireless technologies (such as those that use millimeter-wave spectrum) are effective in delivering short-range service to closely grouped households in urban and suburban settings. These technologies are largely unsuitable for serving rural communities because of the typical geographic dispersion of addresses and the lack of mounting structures (such as towers or building rooftops).
- Fiber is sustainable, scalable, and renewable. It offers greater capacity, predictable performance, lower maintenance costs, and a longer technological lifetime than fixed-wireless technologies. Fiber service is not degraded by line-of-sight issues and is not affected by the capacity issues that constrain fixed wireless networks.
To further illustrate the relative strengths and weaknesses of fixed-wireless technologies, this report presents an analysis of capital and operating costs for a candidate fixed wireless network as compared to a candidate fiber optic network in the same real-world settings. The candidate networks were each designed to deliver complete coverage to unserved residential locations.
While the cost analysis illustrates that fiber’s upfront capital costs are higher than those of fixed wireless in many circumstances, the total cost of ownership over 30 years is comparable for fiber and fixed wireless.
Given the above analysis, fiber offers the greater long-term value as compared to fixed-wireless technologies because of fiber’s long life, capabilities, scalability, and flexibility. In the event that a state funds technologies other than fiber, such as in circumstances where the capital cost to build fiber is cost-prohibitive or the need for service cannot wait for fiber construction, the state should take steps to protect its investment—such as by requiring grantees to guarantee the long-term maintenance and operations of the fixed wireless network. This could be accomplished by requiring a 20-year performance and budget roadmap, and a viable strategy for full service where line-of-sight is a challenge.
This publication was commissioned by the Communications Workers of America and prepared by CTC Technology & Energy in the spring of 2022.
The University of Missouri System Broadband Initiative team was tapped to help train extension professionals to be effective partners in closing their state’s digital divide. The May 3–5 workshop in St. Louis equipped participants from 11 states with training and tools based on the UM System’s Digitally Connected Community Guide model to help close critical broadband access and adoption gaps that impact quality of life and economic recovery.
The National Digital Extension Education Team (NDEET), headed by Rachel Welborn, associate director of the Southern Rural Development Center at Mississippi State, asked UM to provide a train-the trainer-model program around the UM model.
“This collaborative national training opportunity strengthens the impact of broadband expansion across rural America and other areas of need by bringing together Extension professionals as co-learners and community catalysts,” said Alison Copeland, UM System deputy chief engagement officer. “It’s an honor that the Digitally Connected Community Guide was selected by NDEET to train Extension colleagues across the nation.”
The Guide, an online curriculum produced by the UM System Broadband Initiative, offers tools and resources — and a step-by-step process — to engage local partners and residents in bringing high-speed internet to unserved Missouri communities; improve adoption rates and digital literacy; and increase the use of internet-based technologies and applications to improve health, education, and economic opportunities for all.
More information about the Digitally Connected Community Guide is available.
|JUST ANNOUNCED: Biden-Harris Administration Launches $45 Billion “Internet for All” Initiative to Bring Affordable, Reliable High-Speed Internet to Everyone in America Today, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina M. Raimondo will visit Durham, N.C., to announce the launch of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Internet for All initiative, which will invest $45 billion to provide affordable, reliable, high-speed internet for everyone in America by the end of the decade. The initiative will be administered and implemented by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).|
The Internet for All initiative will build internet infrastructure, teach digital skills, and provide necessary technology to ensure that everyone in America – including communities of color, rural communities, and older Americans – has the access and skills they need to fully participate in today’s society.
The Internet for All programs launched today with three Notices of Funding Opportunity: Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program ($42.5 billion) Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program ($1 billion) State Digital Equity Act program ($1.5 billion)
|Want to learn more about these historic programs?|
The Internet for All Webinar series connects key stakeholders to the critical information they need to help ensure the programs’ success.
The programs are funded through President Biden’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and will be administered and implemented by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).
For more information, please visit InternetForAll.gov.
The 2018 National Health Interview Survey found through estimating that more than 32 million adults nationwide have reported having some degree of vision loss. This figure includes people that cannot see at all and others that experience blurred vision despite using therapeutic eyewear.
The challenge for the millions of people with a visual impairment is how they can effectively use the internet for e-learning, shopping, remote working, business, and other key aspects of their everyday living.
So it’s clear that optimal web accessibility for many of them is vital for everyday life.
The pandemic revealed gaping disparities in broadband access and use in urban neighborhoods and rural communities alike. As residents were cut off from health information and telemedicine, students were unable to continue their studies online, citizens in need lacked access to government and nonprofit services, and furloughed employees were unable to search for work, the consequences weighed heavily in many communities.
See full article here