Originally published: September 14, 2011
Last updated: September 14, 2011 - 3:20pm
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration's (NTIA) activities -- at a cost of about a penny per month for each American -- represent a modest yet critical investment in our economic future, one that can pay dividends for decades.Broadband Internet is an essential ingredient not only for job creation but also for improving education, public safety, and health care.
NTIA is a small agency, but we are playing a central role in helping America harness the power of the Internet to meet these national objectives. Our work is focused in three areas: maximizing spectrum use, expanding broadband access and adoption, and policymaking to support the continued growth of the Internet economy.
- One of NTIA’s primary duties is to manage the use of spectrum by the many Federal agencies that depend on it to execute vital missions, including national defense, law enforcement, emergency relief, weather analysis, scientific research, and air traffic control functions.
- Despite the growing importance of the Internet in daily life, 28 percent of Americans never go online. Many towns and anchor institutions – such as schools, libraries, hospitals, health care facilities, and public safety entities – do not have adequate broadband service. To help close this gap, NTIA is overseeing approximately 230 projects nationwide that will deliver more than 100,000 miles of new or upgraded broadband networks, extend broadband access to tens of thousands of community anchor institutions, supply thousands of new or upgraded workstations at public computer centers, and provide free computer and job training for residents.
- As the Internet evolves, new policy and technical challenges emerge. In order to keep the online economy growing, we must preserve the trust of Internet users and foster an environment where American businesses can continue to innovate and compete across borders. NTIA is working with stakeholders in industry, civil society, academia, and the government to meet these challenges in ways that are timely and flexible. We are addressing a host of issues including online privacy, the global free flow of information, and the stability and security of the Internet, including the domain name system–all with the goal of sustaining an open, interconnected global Internet that remains a force for economic growth.
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