As reliable broadband reaches more of areas in United States, it is hoped that the opportunity gap separating Indian country from urban America will begin to diminish. Tribal populations are young and accustomed to evolving technologies (the National Congress of American Indians reports that the median age for American Indians on tribal lands is roughly 26). Tribal leaders have also been taking advantage of ONAP-hosted broadband consultations and training workshops for years, engaging in discourse about how to bring economic growth to their communities.

Tribal regulations also pose a unique set of challenges. As sovereign nations, tribal lands require that telecommunications providers meet certain criteria to protect the land and culture, and most national carriers aren’t interested in complying with additional rules on top of the regular bureaucracy they navigate.

Tribal participation, however, is only part of the equation. To combat the ingrained resistance of major providers and stabilize the fluctuating momentum of federal initiatives, years of collaborative, multi-pronged efforts must lie ahead.

NETCPU.COM has more than 30 years of direct experience working in Native American country. We’ve brought together tribal governments, tribal businesses state and local organizations and telecommunication providers to build collaborative infrastructure which has made it possible for affordable Internet access in a number of American Indian reservations