A Coronavirus Report Card on Technology (Free Edition)

I was recently quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle with my perspectives on how coronavirus will affect the city. In the short term, they are taking a blow like other superstar cities. But I believe SF is so attractive as a place to live that ultimately there will still be a lot of people who want to be there.

My latest column for Governing magazine is also now online. It’s a report card of sorts on how technology has performed in the consumer, business, and civic sectors during the coronavirus. There’s particularly some work yet to do in the latter space. Here’s an excerpt:

Education switched to many of the same remote technologies as business, but not as successfully. Especially at the high-school level, absenteeism from online courses has been a problem. Many minority and lower-income students are likely to be left permanently behind if virtual schools are ineffective in remote teaching this fall. Meanwhile, well-to-do parents are creating multi-family home-schooling "pods," either directly managing their children's online learning or hiring a teacher to home-school them.

Particularly in education, the realities of the digital divide have again been magnified for us. While white-collar workers may be experiencing intermittent broadband problems, many lower-income families in both rural and urban areas don't have broadband at all. One need the coronavirus has underlined, once again, is for rock-solid, affordable universal broadband. It's a precondition for a more digital future.

Click through to read the whole thing.

Since I’m going to be posting more free updates like this on Substack, I probably won’t publish a separate free edition of my monthly newsletter going forward. But I am still going to be putting out the in depth premium edition as well as additional premium content so please subscribe to the premium edition today.