How to Close the Digital Divide in the U.S.

The U.S. government is in the midst of negotiating a plan to address the country’s digital divide, which is loosely understood as the gap between those who have access to reliable internet service and those who don’t. Bhaskar Chakravorti, Dean of Global Business at The Fletcher School, explains that the digital divide involves much deeper and more complex issues than what many believe.

In his recent article in Harvard Business Review, Dean Chakravorti explains that the issue is also a problem of inclusivity, institutional strength, and individual proficiency. He urges policymakers at all levels to take action with several recommendations, including paying for improvements using a “Romer” tax levied on digital ads, coordinating locally appropriate solutions, recruiting Big Tech and major internet service providers to help close gaps, inviting public-private solutions, updating and expanding existing affordability programs, building in future-proofing, and investing in digital literacy.