C2DB: Crowdsourcing to Identify Digital Gaps and to Estimate the Cost of Bridging those Gaps
Uncertainty in measuring digital gaps is a major obstacle that prevents the extension of digital connectivity in rural areas. This document describes a new methodology that, through crowdsourcing, yields reliable, precise, and timely estimates. The C2DB2 project (Crowdsourcing for Digital Connectivity in Brazil) was a technical collaboration between the IDB Group and the National Telecommunications Agency (ANATEL) that took place between April 2021 and March 2022, proving that crowdsourcing can complement the regulatory toolkit by providing accuracy, completeness, and timeliness in the geographical location of the demand and supply of digital connectivity in rural areas. The developed methodology helps to define the population base and service area, which in turn reveals gaps in coverage of fixed, mobile, and institutional broadband services. This helps to estimate the investment and economic impact of bridging the gaps, as well as the public contribution necessary for private investment to be profitable.