Keywords: urban networks, broadband, smart community, technology driven development, demand driven development, municipalities, Sweden, internet access, municipal information platform, infrastructure development, local cooperation
Broadband: a municipal information platform: Swedish experience
Sweden was one of the first countries to adopt a policy for the introduction of broadband and internet access for everybody. Swedish national policy for the expansion of broadband infrastructure has for the last few years been centered on the build-up of urban networks. Studies of the build-up process show that municipalities in their efforts follow a rather similar way to start the process of introducing broadband, but in spite of that strategies as well as tempo vary enormously between municipalities, due to geographical, economic, social and cultural factors. Tranas, a small municipality in the southern part of Sweden, is an example of an early and successful implementation of urban networks. Tranas' strategy involves not only politicians; it involves representatives from schools, local businesses and essentially all citizens of the community.