Kathryn de Wit

What Factors Drive Broadband Affordability for Middle-Class Families?

This brief examines how place-based factors—such as education levels, social vulnerability, regional economic strength, and measures of income inequality—influence broadband affordability. These measures reinforce that income is not the only factor policymakers should consider when seeking to understand broadband affordability and adoption challenges.

Avoid Sunk Costs By Funding The Affordable Connectivity Program

With the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) on the brink of exhausting its funding and congressional action to secure its future still uncertain, it’s time we have the hard conversation about sunk costs. For ACP, that includes:

States Aligning to Federal Broadband Access Standards, but Barriers Remain

A Q&A with Cornell University’s Natassia Bravo and Mildred Warner, Ph.D. Americans’ increasing need for high-speed, reliable internet access has sharpened the digital divide between those who have broadband service and those who do not, and it has driven billions of dollars in federal and state investments. Although state broadband programs have successfully narrowed the divide, questions remain about the effects of state-funded programs, particularly about equity in new connections and funding targets.

Veterans Day looks different this year

I met my husband Dan ten years ago, approximately 18 months after he got back from Afghanistan, and about five weeks after he left active duty. It was, in his words, as he was “shakily beginning the transition into civilian life.” That’s when I began learning about the role the internet plays in the lives of Veterans. Over the last decade, I’ve watched Dan navigate the hard journey of building a new identity as a civilian and Veteran. For Dan, the internet was arguably the most valuable and essential tool he had in redefining “esprit de corps” when he left active duty.

Extending affordable internet can be a much-needed bipartisan victory

Congress is veering toward a potential government shutdown with no sign that the ongoing partisan divide over the budget will end anytime soon. So now, without delay, we need to identify opportunities for collaboration that result in tangible benefits for the public. One such opportunity is the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).

Federal Funding for Affordable Broadband Plans Critical to Achieving Universal Access

Universal access to high-speed internet is achievable. But even with the federal government deploying billions of dollars to expand networks and connectivity, this goal can only be reached if all Americans can afford broadband subscriptions. Federal lawmakers initially allocated $14.2 billion in funding to the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which has enrolled more than 20 million households, becoming a vital tool in the nationwide effort to connect every household and business.

Is Broadband Affordable for Middle-Class Families?

Since Congress enacted the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, much of the discussion among policymakers and the public regarding Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program has focused on efforts to connect low-income populations.

Broadband Basics: How it Works, Why It’s Important, and What Comes Next

Reliable high-speed broadband is essential to life in the US.

How 8 States Are Using Line Extension Programs to Connect Unserved Residents to Broadband

Over more than a decade, states have invested billions of dollars to extend broadband service to areas without high-speed internet. But now states are increasingly grappling with how to identify and connect unserved homes and businesses that are just out of reach of nearby last-mile infrastructure—the segment of a broadband network that connects a local internet service provider (ISP) to a customer—in areas that are otherwise served. Eight states—Califor

Closing the Digital Divide With the Affordable Connectivity Program

The federal government is in the process of deploying billions in broadband funding—including more than $80 billion in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars—to ensure that every American has access to reliable, high-speed internet. But even when infrastructure investments deliver network access to unserved and underserved communities, families won’t benefit unless they can afford internet service.