Towards Digital Inclusion

CCDS builds knowledge resources for social change. This website presents our research on digital inequality in India.
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Towards Digital Inclusion

With the internet becoming essential for education, communication, livelihoods and government services and entitlements, access to the internet is no longer a privilege or luxury. Those who do not have access to the internet (or have rudimentary or limited access) will fall further and further behind in the digital age.

The CCDS study examines the extent of digital inequality in a rapidly-expanding Indian metropolis and explores the barriers to internet access for the poor and marginalised.


CCDS’s new research (2016–2018) aims to identify access to digital devices and internet at school, at home, and at the neighbourhood level for school children from low-income and socially excluded communities and the digital awareness and competency of these school students.

The research will also explore the enablers and barriers for ICT education at school.

Digital inclusion: Addressing the digital capability divide

An introduction to media and information literacy for children
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How broadband can help towards social inclusion

Globalexperiences reveal that training in the uses of the Net and training to enhance the ability to act collectively for the social good are vital accompaniments to the promise that the internet holds out for a more equitable and inclusive society   A bird’s eye view It is now almost a truism that high-speed broadband connectivity to the internet is one of the foundation stones of a modern society. By offering an increasingly wide and evolving range of economic, social and political benefits,...

Computer masti at Azam Campus

Conscious that the digital divide is accentuating social, economic and gender inequalities,  MCE Society at Azam Campus emphasizes free or subsidized digital learning from class 1 onwards. Roughly 80% of the students on this wifi campus with state-of-the-art computer labs come from poor Muslim families “I teach whatever I learn in computer class, to my younger brother and my sister,” says a grinning 12-year-old Nazia*. “This way, even if we are studying in different schools, our knowledge of...

12 pm Ladies Special

At Zensar’s Digital Learning Centre in Yamuna Nagar, semi-literate women are encountering computers and the internet for the very first time. The initiative, in partnership with the PMC and Nasscom Foundation, aims to bring digital literacy to every household in the low-income settlement. “I now have my own email account,” says an excited UshaGalphade as she explains why she likes coming to the community ‘computer class’ everyday. “I joined because I wanted to learn something new.” Her friends...

Digital inclusion: Definitions and status in India

India had 254.40 million internet subscribers by September 2014. That’s an internet penetration of 20.39 per 100. But the picture changes when you consider that 70.23% of them are narrowband subscribers and only 29.77% access a useful connection. Less than 6% of total...

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Bottom of the BRICS heap

How does India, third largest economy in the world, compare with other BRICS nations on digital inclusion? There’s not one indicator – subscribers, penetration, affordability or speed – where India ranks anywhere close to the top. Digital India has some serious work...

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Zopadpatti re!

CCDS conducts media literacy workshops that not only help socially-excluded urban communities understand and use the internet, but also represent their voice online by creating their own content.

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Real Net Natives

For young male internet users from low-income urban settlements, the real and the virtual have fused. Online, caste, income, educational and occupational barriers can be transcended, the distance between genders bridged. A CCDS film made by Aritra...

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Phule Nagar: Connected

In a pilot project aimed at addressing digital inequality in urban India, 1200 low-income and socially-excluded households in Phule Nagar, Pune, have free WiFi internet access. To overcome barriers of age, gender, education and ICT skills, a computer and internet...

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