Esri’s Solution for Governments to Prioritize Equitable Investment in Broadband Garners Award
REDLANDS, Calif.—February 25, 2022— Esri, the global leader in location intelligence, is the recent recipient of the National League of Cities (NLC) Capstone Challenge Series for its work in developing and delivering broadband planning tools, a set of GIS-based solutions designed to help prioritize broadband infrastructure spending, with a lens on equity.
“If the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that the digital divide is real. Our goal in participating in NLC’s Capstone Challenge was to ensure governments have the tools they require to address broadband needs head on,” said Christopher Thomas, Esri Director of Government Markets. “Working directly with city leaders, we were able to develop, test, and deliver solutions that will help these cities and their peers prioritize future broadband investment, understand the needs of residents, more quickly partner with providers, and secure federal and state funding.”
The Capstone Challenge Series is a pilot program that paired NLC partners with motivated local leaders to create repeatable solutions for government needs. NLC is the voice of America’s cities, towns, and villages, representing more than 2,600 municipalities across the country. NLC works to strengthen local leadership, influence federal policy, and drive innovative solutions.
This win would not have been possible without the collaboration from NLC members Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Purcellville, Virginia; and Butte-Silver Bow, Montana, who worked with Esri to provide insight and feedback on their broadband challenges to help us create lasting solutions.
“Working with the cities provided the opportunity to develop a broadband solution that really comes from the minds and hearts of the local governments who will benefit from them,” said Chris Buscaglia, Esri ArcGIS Solutions Lead. “This was a beneficial way for us to ensure we’re delivering needed and usable solutions for the governments that GIS technology supports.”
A win for Esri and the participating cities, it is also a broader win for local governments across the nation, as these solutions will be made openly available for all existing Esri users. Apps and tools will include the following:
- Equity Index Tool—To identify priority populations and gaps in broadband coverage (using key indicators like demographic data and reported broadband)
- Speed Test App—To crowdsource internet speed tests from residents (validating reported internet coverage and speeds from external data sources) to establish an authoritative dataset
- Planning Tools—To report broadband coverage statistics, understand gaps in service, and strategize service expansion
- Communication Tools—To share broadband information with internal and external stakeholders
This new set of solutions for governments to use to expand broadband access will be available to all Esri users on ArcGIS Solutions starting in April 2022. For updates, visit esri.com/en-us/arcgis/products/arcgis-solutions/overview.