How Louisville is leveraging limited resources to close its digital divide

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In Louisville (KY), most households have access to broadband and pay for a subscription, but neither is universal. The story of Louisville is one of identifying existing resources, building relationships, and continually planning for the next step. In 2017, Louisville released a Digital Inclusion Plan referring to “fiber deserts” in neighborhoods in west and southwest Louisville, which also have the city’s highest unemployment rates. The Digital Inclusion Plan identified lack of technology access and use as an issue that must be addressed. Louisville’s Office of Civic Innovation and Technology was created in 2019 to solve these challenges. In 2019, the Office hired a permanent program manager focused entirely on digital inclusion. Past research results—plus Louisville’s relationships with Goodwill, the Metro Housing Authority, and other local partners—are all informing development of the metro area’s next steps.

How Louisville, Ky. is leveraging limited resources to close its digital divide