Bringing Broadband to North Central Massachusetts—Phase 3
Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Business Trend Analyses (July 2011 - July 2012):
Read the Executive Summary of the Broadband study here: Broadband Executive Summary
Read the full Broadband study here: "Broadband Availability and Usage in North Central Massachusetts."
Read the REDI Broadband Public Forum (November 5, 2012)
Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Demographic Section --
-- Dr. Jane Zhang, REDI Faculty Researcher and Assistant Professor of Geophysical Sciences
-- Mr. Patrick O’Brien, REDI Student Research Intern and Geophysical Sciences Student
Business Section --
-- Dr. Beverley Hollingsworth, REDI Faculty Researcher and Assistant Professor of Business Administration
REDI Student Research Interns (Business Administration Students):
-- Ms. Kelly Bourges
-- Ms. Carrie Hill
-- Ms. Chelsey Fraizer
-- Mr. Christopher Brash
For media reactions to the Broadband Study, see:
WBUR News Boston (July 5, 2012) -- REDI's Broadband Study
Worcester Business Journal (3 July 2012) -- "Study: North Central Mass. Needs More High-Speed Internet"
Sentinel & Enterprise (28 March 2012) -- "Fitchburg-area businesses aid students in REDI-made partnership"
Worcester Telegram (13 November 2011) -- "Broadband project to blanket the state"
Sentinel & Enterprise (8 November 2011) -- “Broadband forum pitches need to expand services”
GIS and Demographic Section (Dr. Jane Zhang, REDI Faculty Researcher, and Mr. Patrick O’Brien, REDI Student Research Intern):
- Compiled DSL and Cable availability data for the North Central Massachusetts communities into one GIS database;
- Configured a series of map overlays for the DSL and Cable availability, maps integrating: demographic layers from the 2010 Census;
- Converted business data into the GIS trend mapping to determine digital divide analysis;
- Conducted relevant GIS spatial analysis, particularly broadband hotspot usage.
Business Section (Dr. Beverley Hollingsworth, REDI Faculty Researcher, and Chelsey Fraizer; Chris Brash; Carrie Hill; Karen Corliss -- REDI Student Research Interns):
- Identified businesses to classify broadband use (DSL vs. Cable usage)
- Built database of businesses, using Business Bureau and Yellow/White Pages;
- Designed business survey to determine:
* Types of businesses in general and businesses specific to towns;
* Level of consumer awareness of broadband;
* Broadband options available and currently used from modes available in areas;
* Demand currently existing for broadband services by end users;
* Customer preference in access modes.
- Analyzed trends for:
* Implications of broadband usage to current and future business strategy;
* Importance of broadband to current and future needs of business;
* Relevance of factors in client or customer need for broadband;
* Significance in choosing a broadband provider;
* Challenges preventing use of broadband by businesses.