About Us

Telecommunications reaches almost every aspect of our daily lives. Communities are looking for cost effective ways to expand accessibility, achieve reliability, and save precious public dollars. More and more community leaders pursue local control of connectivity through public ownership, cooperative models, and other nonprofit approaches. At CommunityNets.org, we provide resources for those joining the movement to build broadband networks that are directly accountable to the communities they serve. Case studies, fact sheets, and video are some of the media we offer to help leaders make decisions about community owned networks. We strive to offer resources for informed decisions because we know each community is unique. Telecommunications infrastructure is essential to the health and vitality of a community. Networks must be accountable first to the needs of the community, not the short-term interests of shareholders. 

Read more about our vision.

This site was made possible with funding from the Ford Foundation, the Open Society Foundations, and other supporters. It was created and is maintained by the Community Broadband Networks Initiative of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.

We work with communities across the United States to create the policies needed to ensure telecommunications networks serve the community rather than a community serving the network. The Institute for Local Self-Reliance is a non-profit organization that started in Washington D.C. in 1974.

ILSR's Mission:

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance has a vision of thriving, diverse, equitable communities. To reach this vision, we build local power to fight corporate control. We are a national research and advocacy organization that partners with allies across the country to build an American economy driven by local priorities and accountable to people and the planet.

Read bios for initiative Director Christopher Mitchell and the rest of the broadband initiative team at ilsr.org.

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