The Digital Dominion — More than a Slogan

The Center for Digital Government has released its 2006 Digital Cities Survey, which rates city governments for how they “utilize digital technologies to better serve their citizens and streamline operations.” Virginia cities — and not just those in Northern Virginia — stood out nationally for their embrace of technology.

125,000-249,999 population:

1st: Alexandria (tie with Madison, Wis.)
3rd: Richmond
5th: Hampton (tied with Hollywood, Fla., and Winston-Salem, N.C.)
8th: Chesapeake

75,000-124,999 population:

1st: Roanoke (tied with Ogden City, Utah)

30,000-74,999 population:

3rd: Charlottesville
5th: Lynchburg
6th: Blacksburg

With ties, 37 cities were included in the three categories listed here. Virginia cities nailed down eight of the top spots — more than 20 percent of the total. Kudos all around!

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3 responses to “The Digital Dominion — More than a Slogan”

  1. Larry Gross Avatar
    Larry Gross

    would be nice to see the criteria they used…

    for instance.. I wonder what the correlation is with respect to the widespread (or not) availability high-speed internet infrastructure to the residents of those cities/towns.

    This is relevant because a municipality can expend a tremendous amount of money building full-service web services but if most folks don’t have access to high-speed infrastructure.. the actual usefulness and participation rate could be as important or more so.

    … in other words.. we have this little issue about taking taxpayers money to build these fancy systems which are predicated on serving citizens… not the creators and maintainers of those systems.

    There’s a concept called “Balanced Scorecard”:

    It is a strategic management system that forces managers to focus on the important performance metrics that drive success. It balances a financial perspective with customer, internal process, and learning & growth perspectives.

    … in other words.. the word “customer/taxpayer comes into play…

  2. Larry Gross Avatar
    Larry Gross

    FYI –

    “By the end of next week, residents of the Carmel Church area of Caroline County will have the option of leaving their dial-up modems behind for high-speed Internet access.

    An Internet broadcasting antenna recently placed at a Carmel Church water tower marks the first of Virginia Broadband’s steps to introduce their service throughout Caroline, said Warren Manuel, CEO of Virginia Broadband.

    The basic service will cost $49.50 per month for a connection rate of 400KB per second.

    Virginia Broadband … is a start-up .. and either a very risky venture .. or a very forward looking venture..

    I dunno which.. but the concept of providing wireless high speed access seems to beat “wired” all to heck…

    anyone know anything about this or other companies in Virginia that are pursuing wireless internet business ventures?

  3. Anonymous Avatar

    According to FCC Chairman Kevin Martin, from summer 2005 to summer 2006, broadband connections in rural areas of the U.S. grew by 39%. Penetration rates in rural areas still lag those in urban markets.

    Martin’s remarks were contained in a presentation to the business school at Georgetown University. Also, of interest is a pdf copy of his PowerPoint presentation. Here is the URL.

    Page 4 of the PP presentation contains a map showing the number of broadband providers by Zip Code area. A quick eye-balling suggests that coverage in Virginia is pretty good.

    It’s probably a matter of price and perceived benefit for many non-subscribers.

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