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Penn State Extension: Making Quality Choices…
January 20, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
Making Quality Choices in Broadband Deployment
Approved for 1.25 CM credits
High-speed Internet access, or broadband, is critical to economic opportunity, job creation, education, and civic engagement. But there are too many parts of this country where broadband is unavailable. In urban areas, 97% of Americans have access to high-speed fixed service. In rural areas, that number falls to 65%. All told, nearly 30 million Americans cannot reap the benefits of the digital age.
While the need for accessible and affordable broadband extends far beyond the current crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic has added a newfound urgency to broadband expansion. Connectivity has become essential for people to follow public health guidelines, school closures, and remote work requirements. The presence of adequate broadband impacts distance learning for K-12 as well as Higher Education, economic development and many other aspects of land use planning. Current circumstances are demonstrating broadband internet access as a requirement, rather than a luxury, for residents of Pennsylvania as well as other areas of country.
Prevailing vagaries in the marketplace complicate capital investment decision-making for both policymakers and general ventures. In order to better enable innovation and development in the marketplace for communities to receive access to affordable and reliable broadband, this webinar aims to clarify pros and cons associated with various available broadband technologies and their respective constraints. The webinar will also demonstrate mapping technologies being developed for public use by Penn State Extension.