Lessons from the Pandemic: Chatting with the Chairman on the Past, Present & Future of Broadband

Internet Innovation Alliance

06/25/2020 - 13:00 to 14:00

The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of broadband connectivity. Broadband is critical to ensuring that Americans can telework, participate in remote learning, benefit from telehealth, and much more. The digital divide has closed in recent years, with millions more consumers getting broadband access and infrastructure investment setting records. But that divide persists in some places, either because internet access isn't available or because households have chosen not to subscribe. Closing the digital divide and ensuring that connectivity is maintained during the pandemic can require public-private partnerships, such as Congressional initiatives to increase broadband access and the Federal Communications Commission's "Keep Americans Connected" Pledge, which has ensured that consumers won't be cut off from service during the pandemic due to inability to pay a bill.

The Internet Innovation Alliance (IIA), a broad-based coalition supporting broadband availability and access for all Americans since 2004, invites you to take a closer look at the past, present and future of broadband during a discussion between FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and Bruce Mehlman, Founding Chairman of IIA and former Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Technology Policy. They will explore what the U.S. might have done differently as a nation in years past to have achieved universal broadband access today, and how we can fix the gaps now to get broadband to all Americans in time for the next crisis. Questions from the audience will be answered following the Q&A.