City Makers’ Forum: Tackling digital poverty


Covid-19 has accelerated the digital revolution, underlining the importance of data and digital connectivity to the lives and livelihoods of people and businesses. But has also demonstrated that the revolution is not being felt equally and many people are being left behind.

In fact, millions of people in the UK suffer from digital poverty, with no or insufficient quality of internet access, lacking digital skills or unable to afford to get online.

London is embracing smart cities principles as a way of reducing these inequalities and poverty using big data, new technology and citizen engagement to launch smart city projects that boost economic output, enhance the natural environment, improve education, increase access to work and social mobility, enable and drive social innovation and build vital community connections and relationships.

But with many indicators suggesting that inequalities are widening how is this strategy working? What is London doing to tackle digital poverty today?

In this event, the City Makers Forum will explore these questions in greater depth, with an international look at how have other cities have performed before we take a London-level look at digital inclusion objectives and how the capital’s digital strategy is being delivered.

Then the borough perspective on how investment in digital infrastructure, big data and an approach that enables social innovation is encouraging growth and recovery and finally, a first-hand account of how this plays out on the ground, hearing from a charity on the key challenges and what’s working and what’s not, particularly for young people and their future prospects.

This will be followed by a panel discussion and audience Q&A to share broader views and ideas on how London tackles digital poverty and achieves digital inclusion.

When: Tuesday 21 September 2021, 4 to 5 pm
Format: Zoom

Confirmed Speakers

  • Theo Blackwell MBE, Chief Digital Officer for London, Greater London Authority
  • Hannah Gibbs, Head of Knowledge Future of London (chair)
  • Dr Daniel Miles, Director - Urban Solutions, Hatch
  • Heather Yedigaroff, Head of Strategy and Operations, DG Cities
  • Charly Young MBE, CEO and Co-founder, The Girls' Network 

More to be confirmed


This event is free to attend thanks to our partner, Hatch, but places are limited and registration is essential.

  1. Click 'Register now' and fill out the form.
  2. You will receive an email to acknowledge your request to attend (if you don't see it, please check your junk folder). Please note this email is NOT a confirmation of your place.
  3. We'll let you know if a place becomes available. This is likely to be one week from registration.

Note: This webinar will be recorded and released on FoL's YouTube channel, and some screenshots from the event may be used on social media. Please contact if you have any questions. 

21st September 2021 4:00 PM through  5:00 PM
United Kingdom