Together, we can help bridge the broadband policy divide

Broadband Policy
Analysis Tool

Levaraging AI to gain insight into country broadband policies

To best access the Power BI Map turn your device to landscape mode

Introducing
broadbandpolicy.org

Tech industry volunteers and thought leaders met with Orrick and Haddad & Partners to collect policies and data from various sources such as The Ministries of Technology, and organizations like Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI), to create broadbandpolicy.org.

The team developed artificial intelligence and natural language processing solutions for a data visualization tool that is accessible to anyone, anywhere.

broadbandpolicy.org enables the review of broadband policies from around the world, utilizing a series of metrics and keywords including age, gender, economic freedom, Internet freedom, public access, and race.

This project was inspired by the mission, goals, and objectives of the Broadband Commission of Sustainable Development.

49%

of the world remains unconnected to the Internet, and digital skills are still lacking in many parts of the world – especially for unserved populations

Inclusive broadband policies pave the way for equal participation in the evolving digital economy. Focusing on gender inclusivity, digital skilling, and access to affordable Internet, ensures that everyone, everywhere is considered when developing and implementing broadband policies.

Let’s make digital
intelligence more inclusive

Now is the time for policymakers and stakeholders to work toward establishing and implementing broadband policies that strive for a more inclusive and meaningful Internet. We cannot forget the importance of including skills in broadband policies. These include digital literacy, digital communication, digital security and safety, and digital identity, as described by the coalitionfordigitalintelligence.org.

Progressive broadband policies create more inclusive societies.

55%

Percentage of households globally that are connected to the Internet. The rate of adoption is slowing, rising only slightly from 53% in 2018. In low-income countries, household Internet adoption improved by a mere 0.8% on average.

(Broadband Commission, The State of Broadband 2019: Broadband as Foundation for Sustainable Development)

250M

How many fewer women are online as opposed to men. The global gender gap in Internet access has increased from 2013 to 2017. It remains the most substantial in the least developed counties, while it has decreased in developed countries.

(ITU)

2B

The amount of people who live in a country where Internet is unaffordable. 1 GB of data costs over 5% of what people earn in a month in low- or middle-income countries, far above the affordable threshold of 1 GB of data priced at 2% or less of average income.

(A4AI)

Let's meet the team

Lydia Carroon

DJ Haddad

Rene Kathawala

Marwen Moslah

Melissa Sassi

Mike Tokic

Lydia Carroon, Business Operations Manager, Microsoft Airband Initiative. Lydia Carroon is a Business Operations Manager for the Microsoft Airband Initiative, focusing on international partnerships. The Airband Initiative partners with equipment makers, internet and energy access providers, and local entrepreneurs to make affordable broadband access a reality for communities around the world. Prior to joining Microsoft Lydia worked on connectivity initiatives with Facebook. She attended the University of Vermont for both undergraduate and graduate school, completing an MBA, with a focus on social entrepreneurship.
DJ Haddad is the President and Chief Minister of Design for Haddad & Partners, a mid-sized creative agency with a global footprint representing a diverse portfolio of clients from the retail, finance and technology sectors. DJ oversees a team of innovative players and strategic thinkers, designers, developers and project managers in their efforts to further broadbandpolicy.org's mission. His belief that digital literacy is the most valuable tool for lifelong learning makes this project a personal favorite.

Rene Kathawala serves as Orrick's firmwide pro bono counsel, responsible for managing and initiating the firm's pro bono activities, including all administrative and legal aspects.

Rene works with other pro bono counsel and legal services nonprofits to increase the quantity and quality of pro bono representation that is being provided to indigent clients in each of the cities worldwide where Orrick has a presence. In addition, he supervises and directly works on cases in such diverse areas as immigration law, family and matrimonial law, housing law, public benefits law, employment law counseling, impact litigation and nonprofit advice and counseling. Rene has worked on many substantial matters in the federal and state systems over his career that are reported as precedent. He also works with firm attorneys to strengthen the firm's innovative Impact Finance and Social Enterprise team that he founded and that provides representation in diverse transactional areas to nonprofit, for profit and hybrid organizations dedicated to providing basic services to poor persons around the world in areas including microfinance, water, education, energy, housing and health.

Based on his long-standing commitment to access to justice issues, Rene has been appointed to serve as a member of the New York City Bar Association Right to Counsel TaskForce and the New York City Bar Association Family Court Judicial Appointment & Assignment Process Work Group. In recognition of his expertise in family law, United States District Judge Bloom appointed Rene as a special master in a federal court family law matter in 2014 in the Eastern District of New York in case number 07-cv-02565-ARR-LB, styled Garmhausen et al v. United States Department of Justice et al.

Marwen Moslah is a versatile computer engineer with an AI and data analysis background. He is also fluent in Arabic, English, French and currently learning German. As a Broadband Policy Data Analyst Intern collaborating with a great team, Marwen is exploiting his technical background as well as his linguistic fluency to analyze broadband policies of countries to extract data that will be implemented for the Power BI AI tool of Microsoft. This data analysis covers double-checking negative sentiment against the original policies and pulling out their effective date/age. His contribution also resides in extracting broadband definition and targets as well as the current and future internet upload and download speeds, whether in term of mobile technology or a fixed wireless one.

Melissa Sassi is a Startup Program Manager at IBM focused on empowering early-stage entrepreneurs through technology and business acceleration, technology credits, comarketing, go-to-market strategy, and access to IBM’s partner ecosystem. Melissa is a division-level lead for Call for Code, an initiative aimed at preparing for and responding to disaster scenarios with technical innovation. Prior to joining IBM, Melissa spent several years in Microsoft's Airband Initiative where she was an impact investor focused on internet and energy access. Melissa is Chair of IEEE's Digital Intelligence Working Group and is on the Steering Committee of the Coalition for Digital Intelligence with the World Economic Forum, OECD, IEEE, and the DQ Institute. She is a founding member of broadbandpolicy.org and the Founder & CEO of MentorNations, a youth-led digital skills movement that has taught tens of thousands of young people to code across twelve countries. Melissa holds a Board of Director position within TAKMIL, a US-based nonprofit with 30 schools across Pakistan providing out-of-school youth with informal education. Melissa also serves on the Advisory Board of TechWomen.Asia, an organization with roots in Kabul, Afghanistan focused on tech skill-building for women and girls. Melissa holds two master's degrees in supply chain and finance and is working toward her PhD. Her research focuses on the digital inclusion of unserved communities.

Mike Tokic is head of analytics for the project, responsible for creating the interactive dashboard on the site and the insights underlying it. He works as an Advanced Analytics manager at Microsoft, focusing on building scalable solutions using machine learning and other new technologies within finance.

Let's meet the team

Lydia Carroon, Business Operations Manager, Microsoft Airband Initiative. Lydia Carroon is a Business Operations Manager for the Microsoft Airband Initiative, focusing on international partnerships. The Airband Initiative partners with equipment makers, internet and energy access providers, and local entrepreneurs to make affordable broadband access a reality for communities around the world. Prior to joining Microsoft Lydia worked on connectivity initiatives with Facebook. She attended the University of Vermont for both undergraduate and graduate school, completing an MBA, with a focus on social entrepreneurship.
DJ Haddad is the President and Chief Minister of Design for Haddad & Partners, a mid-sized creative agency with a global footprint representing a diverse portfolio of clients from the retail, finance and technology sectors. DJ oversees a team of innovative players and strategic thinkers, designers, developers and project managers in their efforts to further broadbandpolicy.org's mission. His belief that digital literacy is the most valuable tool for lifelong learning makes this project a personal favorite.

Rene Kathawala serves as Orrick's firmwide pro bono counsel, responsible for managing and initiating the firm's pro bono activities, including all administrative and legal aspects.

Rene works with other pro bono counsel and legal services nonprofits to increase the quantity and quality of pro bono representation that is being provided to indigent clients in each of the cities worldwide where Orrick has a presence. In addition, he supervises and directly works on cases in such diverse areas as immigration law, family and matrimonial law, housing law, public benefits law, employment law counseling, impact litigation and nonprofit advice and counseling. Rene has worked on many substantial matters in the federal and state systems over his career that are reported as precedent. He also works with firm attorneys to strengthen the firm's innovative Impact Finance and Social Enterprise team that he founded and that provides representation in diverse transactional areas to nonprofit, for profit and hybrid organizations dedicated to providing basic services to poor persons around the world in areas including microfinance, water, education, energy, housing and health.

Based on his long-standing commitment to access to justice issues, Rene has been appointed to serve as a member of the New York City Bar Association Right to Counsel TaskForce and the New York City Bar Association Family Court Judicial Appointment & Assignment Process Work Group. In recognition of his expertise in family law, United States District Judge Bloom appointed Rene as a special master in a federal court family law matter in 2014 in the Eastern District of New York in case number 07-cv-02565-ARR-LB, styled Garmhausen et al v. United States Department of Justice et al.

Marwen Moslah is a versatile computer engineer with an AI and data analysis background. He is also fluent in Arabic, English, French and currently learning German. As a Broadband Policy Data Analyst Intern collaborating with a great team, Marwen is exploiting his technical background as well as his linguistic fluency to analyze broadband policies of countries to extract data that will be implemented for the Power BI AI tool of Microsoft. This data analysis covers double-checking negative sentiment against the original policies and pulling out their effective date/age. His contribution also resides in extracting broadband definition and targets as well as the current and future internet upload and download speeds, whether in term of mobile technology or a fixed wireless one.
Melissa Sassi is a Startup Program Manager at IBM focused on empowering early-stage entrepreneurs through technology and business acceleration, technology credits, comarketing, go-to-market strategy, and access to IBM’s partner ecosystem. Melissa is a division-level lead for Call for Code, an initiative aimed at preparing for and responding to disaster scenarios with technical innovation. Prior to joining IBM, Melissa spent several years in Microsoft's Airband Initiative where she was an impact investor focused on internet and energy access. Melissa is Chair of IEEE's Digital Intelligence Working Group and is on the Steering Committee of the Coalition for Digital Intelligence with the World Economic Forum, OECD, IEEE, and the DQ Institute. She is a founding member of broadbandpolicy.org and the Founder & CEO of MentorNations, a youth-led digital skills movement that has taught tens of thousands of young people to code across twelve countries. Melissa holds a Board of Director position within TAKMIL, a US-based nonprofit with 30 schools across Pakistan providing out-of-school youth with informal education. Melissa also serves on the Advisory Board of TechWomen.Asia, an organization with roots in Kabul, Afghanistan focused on tech skill-building for women and girls. Melissa holds two master's degrees in supply chain and finance and is working toward her PhD. Her research focuses on the digital inclusion of unserved communities.
Mike Tokic is head of analytics for the project, responsible for creating the interactive dashboard on the site and the insights underlying it. He works as an Advanced Analytics manager at Microsoft, focusing on building scalable solutions using machine learning and other new technologies within finance.

Haddad & Partners would like to thank John Barone, Ryan Cayer, Cindy Carrasquilla, Catina Cricco, Benoit Dutrevis, Nicolet Gatewood, David Sandoval, Malcolm Twist and other staff members for their work on broadbandpolicy.org.

How can you help
broadbandpolicy.org movement?

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BROADBAND POLICY ANALYSIS TOOL

Leveraging AI to gain insight into

country broadband policies