Measuring the Digital Divide in NYC: An Open Data Guide


March 11, 2021

4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

a part of

NYC Open Data Week 2021 


One of the most immediate and wide-ranging effects of COVID-19 has been the urgent need for internet access to pursue daily activities in a safe virtual setting. However, digital life is not available to all New Yorkers: close to 500,000 NYC households lack any type of internet connection (including broadband, dial-up, satellite, and cellular data).

This event will begin with a data walkthrough from Citizens’ Committee for Children (CCC) on the digital divide across NYC’s neighborhoods and communities followed by a discussion on how barriers to internet access have impacted New Yorkers during the COVID-19 pandemic – from students in remote learning, to virtual enrollment in safety net programs, telehealth services, and more.

The second part of the event will invite participants to explore local datasets from Open Data NYC – like NYC Wi-Fi Hotspot Locations, Broadband Adoption and Infrastructure, and others – and discuss how local initiatives and infrastructure can bridge the digital divide. The session will conclude with an optional workshop, instructing participants on how to plot digital resources using Open Data NYC datasets in Google My Maps and consider these findings alongside CCC’s neighborhood-level data.

Local advocates, service providers/policymakers, and everyday New Yorkers all encouraged to attend – especially those passionate about improving digital equity in New York City.



Jack Mullan, Research Associate

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