I am incredibly grateful to everyone who’s supported me over these past few months since leaving my position at Simmons University, including my colleagues at the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society and the UCLA Center for Critical Internet Inquiry where I continue to keep affiliations.
Today, I am incredibly privileged to be able to announce my new role as Founder and Director of the Digital Equity Research Center at the Metropolitan New York Library Council. I am excited to lead this brand new initiative at METRO that will center social, economic, and racial justice in community-based and participatory digital equity research projects. Thank you to Nate Hill and the METRO Board of Trustees for this extraordinary opportunity. Today, we begin.
Here’s a snippet from the press release:
“The Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) is pleased to announce the launch of the Digital Equity Research Center (DERC), a new applied research center with a focus on working with communities to better understand and co-design meaningful responses to local digital equity challenges. DERC provides in-depth, high quality research and analysis to inform digital equity practitioners, policymakers, and philanthropic communities in New York City, Westchester County, and beyond. Toward this goal, DERC engages in community-based and participatory digital equity research to advance social, economic, and racial justice.
DERC assumes digital inequality must include analyses of structural racism, economic injustice, and other forms of oppression in order to understand and address the root causes of the digital divide. Digital equity will not be achieved simply by distributing technology and internet access alone. Therefore, DERC uses critical theoretical insights along with participatory research methods to ensure those most impacted by the digital divide are included, whenever possible, in interventions to promote digital equity and social justice.”