Our Approach

From June-October 2022, the Digital Equity Council hosted 17 community conversations and solution design workshops in the City’s least connected neighborhoods, reaching nearly 400 residents. The following outlines the DEC’s approach to engaging community members and developing the Digital Equity Plan. 

A guiding team is a cross-sector leadership group that works to reimagine the relationships among the people, programs, and organizations to achieve systemic change for a community issue. The team acts as the glue for collaboration, serving and supporting the collective work. The guiding team works to ensure people impacted by the issue at hand are at the table when working to understand the problem and assets, and encourages the co-creation of solutions.

Guiding Question

How can we work together to achieve digital equity in Chicago, so people in communities with the greatest barriers can utilize quality Internet, devices and digital learning tools to advance their goals?



  1. Identify which communities and populations are most burdened by digital inequities using data and stories
  2. Establish trusting, collaborative partnerships among communities most burdened, and organizations and institutions seeking to address the digital divide
  3. Identify what the biggest barriers to equity are for communities most burdened by the digital divide
  4. Identify and leverage existing assets to break down barriers identified, and identify where there are gaps in resources
  5. Compile community-rooted recommendations in the areas of Policy, Laws, & Regulations; Public-Private Partnerships; and Direct Service; as well as how to institutionalize and sustain an on-going, community-led digital equity coalition