Next Century Cities Announces Three Winning Cities of the Benton Awards for Next Generation Engagement
Next Century Cities announced the three winning cities of the inaugural Charles Benton Next Generation Engagement Awards: Raleigh (NC), Austin (TX), and Louisville (KY). The three cities were selected for proposing innovative programs that will use high-speed broadband to improve civic engagement and democratic participation.
The Benton Awards were given by Next Century Cities, a nonprofit membership organization of over 145 mayors and city leaders nationwide committed to ensuring access to fast, affordable, and reliable internet access for their citizens. The three municipal governments that won for harnessing high-speed internet to enhance civic engagement were each awarded $30,000 and will receive hands-on technical assistance for the next year to help drive their projects forward. In Raleigh, a team will develop InVision Raleigh, an immersive online tool that makes it easier for citizens to get involved in visioning and planning with local government. In Austin, a program called Smart Work, Learn, Play will engage public housing residents near two public transportation hubs to increase citizen access to and use of online public services. Finally, city officials in Louisville plan to wire an existing community center in West Louisville with gigabit connectivity, creating a Gigabit Experience Center which will serve as a hub for this underserved community, providing access to digital training, entrepreneurship, and civic engagement opportunities. The Benton Award is primarily supported by the Democracy Fund, with additional support from the Benton Foundation.
Next Century Cities Announces Three Winning Cities of the Benton Awards for Next Generation Engagement Charles Benton Next Generation Engagement Award (more)