Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme

Supporting boroughs to tackle digital exclusion in London

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Status: Live


London boroughs have long been concerned about the issue of digital exclusion. The COVID-19 pandemic has made taking action to tackle it more urgent and important than ever.

The London Recovery Board’s Digital Access for All Mission has set a goal for “Every Londoner to have access to good connectivity, basic digital skills and the device or support they need to be online by 2025.” As part of this mission, the Greater London Authority (GLA) and LOTI launched The Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme (DIIP). Working with partners in the public, third and private sectors, our goal was to use innovation methods to discover, design, develop and scale initiatives that support digitally excluded Londoners who have been left particularly vulnerable during the Covid pandemic. This work started in June 2021 and will last for 2 years.

Programme goals

The Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme aims to deliver positive outcomes for London residents, by supporting public sector and VCS organisations that work directly with digitally excluded people.

Key projects delivered to date

The following projects were delivered by LOTI boroughs and their partners:

  1. Mapping Digital Exclusion: This project sought to build on a previous piece of work by LOTI boroughs to use data to map the scale and nature of digital exclusion in London. The intention was to test how insights from data can help improve the design and targetting of digital inclusion services more effectively. Key deliverables include:
  2. Digital Inclusion Research: This project brought to light the range of digital inclusion initiatives in London, the key barriers and success factors to tackling digital exclusion. Key deliverable:
  3. Providing Devices: This project sought to help London’s public sector organisations maximise the number of devices to benefit digitally excluded Londoners. Key deliverables include:
  4. Digital Inclusion in Temporary Accommodation: This project sought to uncover the specific needs of digitally excluded individuals and families living in temporary accommodation hostels. Key deliverable:
  5. Supporting Dementia Care: This project sought to design and test digitally-enabled approaches to support people living with dementia to engage online in order to reduce their social isolation adn improve wellbeing. Key deliverable:
    • Project toolkit coming soon
  6. Providing Social Tariffs: This project sought to increase the visibility of and promote the social tariffs available to Londoners. Key deliverable:
  7. Using Social Value: This project sought to support boroughs in directing the social value provisions of contracts to support digital inclusion.
  8. Triaging Support for Digitally Excluded Residents: More details to follow
  9. Directory of Digital Inclusion Service in London: More details to follow
  10. Digital Inclusion Conference: This in-person event sought to bring together London boroughs and their third and private sector partners to celebrate what’s been achieved to date in tackling digital exclusion in our city and to help organisations to share and connect. Event video coming soon.

What we’re focusing on now

Our main priority for the rest of the programme is to design and launch Get Online London. This is London’s first digital inclusion service – supported by LOTI and the GLA – and delivered by Good Things Foundation. Over the next few months, we’ll be focusing on implementing the infrastructure needed to provide, devices, mobile data and digital skills to Londoners via VCS organisations. More details on this and how you can contribute or get involved can be found on this page.

Get involved

If you work in London’s local government and wish to get involved in future projects or stay connected with the rest of the programme, we invite you to join our Basecamp space where we will post major announcements and opportunities.



Guide to Lending and Gifting Digital Devices

This toolkit takes key learnings from current device lending and gifting schemes and provides advice for London councils and other organisations that wish to set up similar schemes.

Guide to Sourcing Digital Devices

This toolkit takes key learnings from the way several organisations have recently sourced digital devices for local residents and provides advice if you wish to set up a similar scheme.

Guide to Upcycling Retired Digital Devices

This toolkit takes takes key learnings from current device upcycling schemes and provides advice for London councils and other organisations that wish to set up similar schemes.

Social Tariffs Toolkit

A toolkit, developed with Ofcom, to encourage signposting to broadband social tariffs.

Research into Device Upcycling in London

A research report exploring the potential of using upcycled devices from London's major corporate and public sector organisations to meet the demand for devices.

Research into Digital Inclusion in London

A comprehensive report outlining the approaches undertaken by the public, private and third sectors in tackling digital exclusion in London.

Digital Inclusion Case Study Library

A searchable database of 28 international case studies on digital inclusion initiatives.

Guide to councils’ powers to fund digital access for disabled people

Guide on how councils can fund provision of computer devices and connectivity for people living with disabilities.

London Digital Exclusion Map

A map for digital inclusion leads, VCS organisations and others to understand the geographic distribution of digital exclusion to ward level.

London Digital Exclusion Personas

Pack of 24 personas of digitally excluded individuals, created by London boroughs as part of LOTI's mapping digital exclusion project.

How to upcycle retired devices in your organisation

A simple and practical guide and process map to help organisations upcycle their retired devices.

Triaging Digital Inclusion Needs

LOTI sought to test the effectiveness of a triaging digital inclusion needs approach with the following four boroughs: Barnet, Kensington and Chelsea, Southwark, and Westminster.

Project Timeline

DI Service Website

Digital Inclusion Service Workshops

On 8 June 2022, LOTI, GLA and Good Things Foundation held two workshops with London boroughs and VCS organisations to get their feedback on initial proposals for developing a London-wide digital inclusion service that will seek to offer devices, data and digital skills to Londoners who aren’t online. This summary captures the key discussion points.

Digital Skills Needs Assessment Tool: Show and Tell

On 29 March Nick Wolff from Southwark Council presented their Digital Skills Needs Assessment Tool. This tool allows borough practitioners to measure the digital skills levels of their residents, in order to better coordinate support. Watch the recording here.


Summary Note Promoting Social Tariffs Workshop

Promoting Social Tariffs Workshop

On 27 January, LOTI, in collaboration with Ofcom, held a workshop to understand the barriers to promoting broadband social tariffs and to identify potential solutions. View the slides here.

Social Tariffs Resource

A table listing the Social Tariffs offered by broadband providers and the mobile packages offered by telecommunication providers (telcos). It can be used by frontline practitioners as a tool for signposting residents to more affordable data deals available to them. Eligibility criteria apply.

LOTI Digital Inclusion Research Final Version


Digital Inclusion Research

An in-depth report on the types of digital inclusion initiatives in London including challenges, success factors and key recommendations.

DIIP Progress Update Blog

In this blog post, Genta Hajri, Delivery Lead: Digital Innovation at LOTI shares the progress boroughs have made so far in delivering against the programme outcomes.

Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme Wave 1 Stocktake Workshop 20 October 2021

DIIP Workshop 3: Wave 1 Stocktake

On 20 October, LOTI held a workshop with boroughs to share the latest on Wave 1 projects and gather feedback and ideas on potential Wave 2 projects.


Emerging digital inclusion research findings

LOTI commissioned Will Bibby (freelance strategist and researcher specialising in social and public innovation) to undertake research on the submissions to our crowdsourcing exercise. Here’s a summary of  emerging high-level themes and insights from his interviews.

Digital Inclusion Research Findings

DDIP workshops

DIIP Workshops

To kick-off two projects, LOTI willl be hosting a workshop to explore the potential of device upcycling as a contribution to solving digital exclusion (register here), and phase 2 of the mapping project focussing on drawing insights to target interventions (register here).

Table showing first wave of DIIP projects

First DIIP projects selected

Four projects have been selected for the first wave of activity in this programme. 1) Mapping Digital Exclusion with Data, 2) Device Upcycling, 3) Digital Inclusion in Temporary Accommodation, 4)  Supporting Dementia Carers. If you wish to get involved in these projects, please email to be connected to our Basecamp space.


Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme Workshop 2

A workshop for London boroughs to explore potential digital inclusion projects that could benefit from a collaborative approach. Find out more about the projects we’ll be conducting in the first wave here and a full summary of discussions here.

WEBSITE COPY Of Workshop 2 Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme


LOTI Show & Tell

LOTI Central Team share the desired outcomes for the programme, the approach to engagement, and insights gathered from crowdsourcing what initiatives have been undertaken in London so far.


Digital Inclusion in London: Establishing where we are Workshop

A workshop for boroughs and their partners to share details about digital inclusion initiatives and explore ideas for future projects. The summary can be read here.

Workshop 1 Summary Notes LOTI Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme

Crowdsourcing Digital Inclusion programmes

We’ve reecived 100+ submissions from organisations in London sharing details about initiatives, projects and programmes of work they have undertaken, or are currently undertaking, to support digitally excluded Londoners. Details can be found in this blog & the airtable can be accessed here.


Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme

This deck outlines the initial areas of focus and planning timeline for LOTI’s work with boroughs and the GLA to support digitally excluded Londoners who have been left vulnerable during the Covid pandemic.

Digital Inclusion Innovation Programme
Guidance – Local Authority Duties And Powers To Fund Provisions To Enable Digital Access For Disabled People -.docx


Disability Law Service Guidance

Advice on how Local Authorities can make use of their duties & powers to fund provisions to enable digital access for disabled people.


Digital Access for All Mission

The Mayor of London has allocated £1.5 million over the next two years to work with the London Office of Technology and Innovation (LOTI) to tackle digital exclusion and help Londoners access the devices and skills they need to get online.

Mayor of London grey


Social Value in Procurement webinar

LOTI is hosting a webinar for boroughs to explore how to make use of social value clauses in procurement contracts to tackle digital exclusion.


Commissioning Research

LOTI has commissioned four days of web research to identify examples of digital inclusion best practice from around the world. The case studies found as part of that research will form part of a digital inclusion library we will share on our Resources page.

Person working at a laptop


LOTI Dragon’s Den: Bridging the Digital Divide

Full recording of LOTI’s two-hour session at Digital Leaders Week.


Pitch 7: Crowdfunding for digital devices

Philip McCorkell (Communications Manager) and Ally Round (Principal Policy and Projects Officer) shared details about the London Borough of Camden’s collaboration with Camden Learning to create a Crowdfunder to end the digital divide for Camden pupils. Full video here.

Camden Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week
Lambeth Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week


Pitch 6: Internal digital engagement campaign

Paul Tait (Delivery Manager) shared learnings from London Borough of Lambeth’s 18-month project (which is still underway) to improve their staff’s awareness of and ability with workplace technology, specifically Microsoft Office 365.


Pitch 5: Improving digital skills internally

Dionne Lowndes (Head of IT and Digital) shared details about the London Borough of Southwark’s ‘DiTO’ framework, creating an internal culture of personal responsibility for Digital and Innovation competencies development.

Southwark Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week
Brent Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week (1)


Pitch 4: Connectivity+devices+skills

Lucy Dunn (Workstream Lead – Digital Enablement) & Ala Uddin (Head of Adult Education – Brent Start) shared details about London Borough of Brent’s free package which includes connectivity + devices + skills training for residents in the greatest need.


Pitch 3: Digital skills guides

Opama Khan (Head of Digital Place) shared details about how the London Borough of Croydon developed hard copy digital skills guides as an analogue solution to a digital challenge.

Croydon Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week
Kingston & Sutton Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week


Pitch 2: Content curation & digital marketing

Daniel Green (Corporate Head of Health Behaviours & Public Health Services) shared how Royal Boroughs of Kingston and Sutton’s shared service curates relevant resources online to amplify the council’s services to those who need to access it via social media and other channels.


Pitch 1: Multi-generational buddy system

Susan McFarland-Lyons (Senior Delivery Manager) shared details about how London Borough of Hackney adapted Salford Foundation’s model to develop a multi-generational buddy system, pairing young people with older residents to teach them digital skills.

Hackney Pitch_ LOTI Dragon's Den at DigiLeaders Week

LOTI at DigiLeaders Week


LOTI Dragon’s Den at DigiLeaders Week

LOTI is hosting a two-hour session on 14 October from 12-2pm at DigiLeaders Week to showcase the products and projects that London boroughs have developed to bridge the digital divide across the capital.


Digital Inclusion Workshops Summary and Recommendations

On Monday 28 and Wednesday 30 September, LOTI held workshops to explore digital inclusion issues based on residents’ increasing need to access education, work, training, social connections.

September 2020_LOTI Digital Inclusion Workshop Notes
LOTI Digital Inclusion for Covid Recovery


Project Overview and Workshop slides

As digital exclusion is a multi-faceted issue that cannot be addressed in one go, we held two discovery workshops to explore and identify specific areas where we have the influence and ability to make change happen.

Project Kick-off

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