RFP Released for Minneapolis Community Technology Survey

INVITATION: The City of Minneapolis Information Technology (IT) Department is soliciting proposals from qualified consultants for professional surveying services to plan and conduct a series of surveys of Minneapolis residents regarding computer and internet use. The surveys are referred to as the Minneapolis Community Technology Surveys and are primarily used to determine the state of the digital divide in Minneapolis.

The Minneapolis IT Department has conducted a Community Technology Survey in 2012, 2013, and 2014 and would like to continue the survey over the next several years to measure changes in the community over time.

IT is seeking proposals from a variety of research organizations to evaluate current professional research options and opportunities within the surveying industry as part of the extended commitment to this project.  The desired contract period will be up to six (6) years to conduct up to three (3) resident surveys.

The RFP is open August 27 through September 25, 2014 at 4:00 p.m. RFP: Community Technology Survey posted at www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/finance/procurement/rfp 

Hack for MN Team “Connect Me Minneapolis” Develops Personas for Users of the TLC Community Tech Center database

At the June Hack for MN event, the Community Technology Asset System project idea was selected by a team of community-minded technologists.  As the team worked and learned together, they decided to develop personas for users of the TLC Community Technology Center data and website.

The team coined their project as “Connect Me Minneapolis,” were awarded “Best Service Design” at the event and their prize is a meeting with Otto Doll, CIO at the City of Minneapolis.

See the work, comment and engage: http://www.slideshare.net/KatJayne/digital-divide-personas
by Kat Jayne on Jun 02, 2013: During the HackforMN weekend the group brainstormed and did audience, use case, and persona research with potential contributors and users of a free online database of public use computers, free wi-fi hotspots, and technology training. The research was used to form personas and problem statements and then wireframes were sketched to solve each problem statement. The original problem was raised by the Technology Literacy Collaborative and the City of Minneapolis.

More to come!

Survey Results Published – 2013 Minneapolis Community Technology Survey

Thanks to the 3,211 residents for their participation, the second year’s results are in on a survey the City of Minneapolis conducted to understand how Minneapolis residents use computers, mobile devices and the Internet to better their daily lives.

More mobile access is the biggest change between 2012 and 2013:  While ownership of Internet-enabled computers varied greatly across the City, ownership of Internet-enabled mobile phones is higher in 2013 – even among those households least likely to own a computer.

Age, income and race are still key factors in resident’s access and use of technology.  Residents age 65 and older and those with household income less than $25,000 are least likely to use computers and the Internet.  Sixty-five percent of Black/African American respondents have a computer with Internet at home, compared to 90% of whites.  We also see that 40% of unemployed respondents looking for work don’t have a computer with Internet at home, and overall, 16% of households with children don’t have a computer with Internet at home.  Among the respondents with children in their household who reported their race on the survey, whites are far more likely to have access at home (95%) compared to people of color (73%).

The entire report is on the City’s website. An interactive map is also available to compare neighborhood data to city-wide data.

Partnership Brings Wi-fi to Senior High Rise

The Holland High Rise in Northeast Minneapolis will soon provide wifi access in the community room for its residents and the community thanks to a new partnership.  The Logan Park Neighborhood Association (LPNA) learned of residents’ lack of internet access and met with the City of Minneapolis and Volunteers of America to figure out what they could do.  The City of Minneapolis approved the nonprofit’s application for free public wifi computer access, the LPNA is committed to buying 6-8 laptops and the Takoda Institute will provide a volunteer tutor.  It’s taken time and effort but the Holland High Rise residents hope to have the internet access in April and start the trainings in June.

Read the article and learn more about the City of Minneapolis Free Community Wifi Accounts.

City of Minneapolis Digital Inclusion

WebJunction, a training and learning resource for librarians across the country, highlighted the work that the city of Minneapolis is doing to bridge the digital divide.  The article, linked here, describes the model that Minneapolis city officials used to work across sectors and within existing communication channels, including the TLC.

As trailblazers in tackling the digital divide in Minneapolis, city officials and their partners are creating models for other communities to follow.