Donate
‹ Back
Community Networks 17 January 2018

Indigenous Connectivity Summit Community Report

Executive Summary

The Indigenous Connectivity Summit, held November 8 and 9, 2017, at Hotel Santa Fe in Santa Fe, New Mexico, was the first Internet Society meeting to focus on connecting North American Indigenous communities to the Internet. It drew more than 200 participants in-person and online for a two-day series of panels, presentations, and open discussions examining community networks in North America and abroad, including their impact on various communities. The Summit was preceded by a two-day training session for Indigenous people currently operating a community network and those planning to deploy one.

The event launched a critical dialogue about what connectivity means to Indigenous communities and how to ensure Alaska Native, American Indian, Inuit, First Nations, and Métis communities have affordable, high-quality, and sustainable Internet access. Speaker and participant testimonials highlighted the vital correlation between connectivity and socio-economic benefits, including self- determination and autonomy, culture and language preservation, economic development, health, education and employment. There was a general consensus that community networks are an ideal path for Indigenous communities to empower themselves and drive their own connectivity solutions.

The event generated key recommendations to promote sustainable connectivity in rural and remote Indigenous communities. These include the need for:

  1. Creative connectivity solutions that focus on sustainability.
  2. An enabling environment of supportive policies, funding opportunities and public education.
  3. Capacity building and education within communities.
  4. Easier access to spectrum for Indigenous communities.
  5. Collaborative backhaul solutions founded on future-proof technology.
  6. Research on the state of Indigenous connectivity across North America.

Videos of the presentations and discussion are available at Internet Society’s livestream channel at livestream.com/internetsociety/indigenet17.

‹ Back

Related articles

Supporting the Creation and Scalability of Affordable Access Solutions: Understanding Community Networks in Africa
Community Networks23 May 2017

Supporting the Creation and Scalability of Affordable Access Solutions: Understanding Community Networks in Africa

Community networks, communications infrastructure deployed and operated by citizens to meet their own communication needs, are being increasingly proposed as a solution to connect the unconnected.

Summary of activities undertaken by the Internet Society related to the implementation of the targets, recommendations, and commitments of the World Summit on the Information Society
Internet Governance18 January 2013

Summary of activities undertaken by the Internet Society related to the implementation of the targets, recommendations, and commitments of the World Summit on the Information Society

UNITED NATIONS COMMISSION ON SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY FOR DEVELOPMENT (CSTD) INTRODUCTION The Internet Society is a nonprofit organization founded in...

Policy Brief: Spectrum Approaches for Community Networks
Community Networks10 October 2017

Policy Brief: Spectrum Approaches for Community Networks

Introduction The Internet Society’s goal is to make the Internet available for everyone, everywhere. 1 The Internet currently reaches three...

Join the conversation with Internet Society members around the world