Bridging the digital divide in Galicia
The Digital Agenda of Galicia 2020 aims to achieve fully digital citizenship by the end of the decade. To help accomplish this goal, the CeMIT Network project worked to bridge the digital divide by providing technology training and equipment to Galicians.
" The CeMIT Network is a key tool, not only for tasks related to basic digital literacy, but also for allowing anyone to improve their digital competence level, regardless of their initial level. "
The CeMIT project’s aim was to bridge the digital divide and improve the employability and quality of life of Galicians. With a focus on the elderly, people with disabilities, the unemployed, youth, women and people at risk of social exclusion, the project provided equal access to technology and training by ensuring that every Galician citizen would be no more than half an hour away from an ICT classroom.
During the course of the project, over 72 775 Galician people participated in more than 280 800 hours of digital training. In addition, 2 432 improved their employability by receiving a certificate of digital competence in office automation. Via its 800 digital allies, who were instrumental in making the technology and training available to everyone, Galicia reduced the number of people who have never used the internet from 50 % of the population in 2008 to just 19 % in 2017 – a total reduction of 31 %.
ICT in the classroom
To succeed, the project forged a collaborative agreement between federal, regional and local governments and administrations. As part of this agreement, local entities, such as schools, were responsible for providing the venues and staff needed for the digital training. The Galician administration, was responsible for providing the equipment, IT support and grants needed to implement the training activities for digital inclusion.
In addition to providing equipment, the use of technology in classrooms was encouraged and training was adapted for digital literacy. The Amtega EMA e-learning platform was launched, giving every citizen 24/7 access to training.
The project also launched a dedicated digital inclusion website geared towards minimising the region’s digital divide. The site improves communication with citizens about the ‘digital ecosystem’ of actions relating to digital inclusion, via web content and the sending of a monthly newsletter to more than 1 800 subscribers.
Towards digital skills
Now that the region has successfully reduced its digital divide in terms of access, the project is turning its attention to ensuring that citizens have the digital skills needed to increase the region’s employability and social standing, while also encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship.
Total investment and EU funding
Total investment for the project “RED CEMIT: Network of Centres for Modernisation and Technological Inclusion of Galicia (CEMIT Network)” is EUR 482 128, with the EU’s European Regional Development Fund contributing EUR 385 702 through the “Regional Research and Innovation” Operational Programme for the 2007-2013 programming period. The investment falls under the priority “Services and applications for the citizen”.