The Digital Divide in the city of Barcelona

Access to knowledge and information has changed radically in the last 20 years. The universal nature, speed and hyper-connectivity of the new Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have transformed our way of thinking, living and communicating with our environment. The digital transformation has required citizens to acquire new skills to adapt to this new situation. However, factors such as age, education, income level and employment impact this process, giving rise to what has been called the “digital divide.”

The report ‘The digital divide in the city of Barcelona’, developed by Mobile World Capital at the request of the Barcelona City Council, is an analysis of the citizens’ internet access and usage that aims to measure the city’s level of digitalization in the context of Europe and identify opportunities and scope for development.

Besides specific conclusions demonstrating a good level of digitisation among the citizenship, the drafting of the report reveals a need for a mechanism to objectively evaluate progress in this task, with enough detail to allow decisions to be made and efforts to be prioritized. So far this kind of study has been conducted at a continent, country or regional level, and this report is an effort to achieve precision at a city level. It also provides a solid base of methodology and data (available in the project website) that can allow progress to be measured and comparisons to be made.

Measuring the digital divide in cities was necessary, and Barcelona offers this study and its data to all the cities that share this view. In the same way as countries and regions share evaluation criteria to guide their digital agendas and be able to compare, support each other and learn, cities need a similar analysis mechanism, and this report and its data visualisation aims to be a contribution and a proposal.

Client: Mobile World Capital Barcelona
Completion: 2016
Link to the project ->

Posted in ddivide, featured, spatialities