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Voluntary Sector and the Internet/IT

Updated 25/11/13

Follow the trail

This page

Voluntary and community sector IT use:



This is a briefings style page, in the Software and Technology section.

Policy, Research and Reports

Community focus

Inclusion in the Information Society - The Distinctive Role of E-Gateways The report from Gateways to the Virtual Society research project (part of Virtual Society?) was downloadable from Warwick Business School Ikon unit site, but no longer? The research, by Sonia Liff, Peter Watts and Fred Steward, included a survey of 300 facilities in 1998. It categorises community IT/internet access centes as being ShopFront E-gateways (e.g. cafes) or Community E-Gateways (closely connected to a particular geographic, ethnic or other community).

Local Connections: Making the Net Work for Neighbourhood Renewal was from Communities Online.

The American Community Technology Centers' Network gives the lowdown of whats happening over there.

Development Projects

Also see Functional Support page.

Making the Net Work A joint UK-US initiative, aiming to develop 'how to' guidance for those trying to get their organisation or neighbourhood online, or how to create community technology or learning access centres. The Department of Trade and Industry has funded a start up kit for those creating online communities and developing other community networking projects.

There are UK Online Centres around the country providing ICT access for communities, in places such as internet cafés, public libraries, colleges, community centres, village halls. Quite a few are run by voluntary organisations. (See Local Resources below.)

Community Network Analysis and ICTs - Bridging and Building Community Ties - is a research project run by University of Brighton/SCIP.


Association for Progressive Communications 'Internet and ICTs for Social Justice and Development'. The UK GreenNet is one of a wide range of civil society organisations belonging to this international network, which among other things is a 'facilitator of civil's society's engagement with ICTs and related concerns'.

Journal of Community Informatics (enabling communities through ICT).

Local Internet/IT Resources

We would welcome more contact details (especially outside London). There are many more locally based web sites on the Local contacts page, which may well lead to community facilities.

The net:gain project has now closed?

Anglesey See Menternet on Local Contacts.

Bradford Resource Centre.

Brighton See Resource Centre on Local Contacts.

London, West Community Technology Centre, Nottingdale Technology Centre, W10. Low cost IT and design services for charities and community groups - a design studio where students do work placements. Phone 020 7243 4880, email:

Manchester People's Voice Media.

Renfrewshire (Barrhead) Try Login Internet Cafe, a Youth Internet Cafe and ICT Learning Centre.


e_bus Not sure what has happened ot this - web site not working July/Novt 04 but still shows as a project of YouthNet. It is a custom-built double-deck bus delivering mobile internet access and conferencing facilities.

Also look at

Telework Association promotes and supports "anywhere working".


The following are various names and flavours for community-centred physical IT resource facilities:

We have a glossary of internet/web terms.