The Internet Services Providers’ Association is delighted to announce the finalists for the 2021 Internet Hero Awards.

The winner is chosen by the ISPA Council and will be announced at the annual ISPA Awards, held on Thursday 4th November at the Sheraton Grand London Park Lane.

There is no doubt that the internet is being used now more than ever before. Look at any statistics available and you will see that internet traffic has grown spectacularly in the past few years, that a greater percentage of the world’s population than ever before are connected to the internet, and that average speeds are increasing globally.

Closer to home in the UK, over the past year gigabit broadband was rolled out faster than ever before and hit over 50% nationwide coverage, the network successfully coped with several record peaks in traffic and the effective communication of information about COVID-19 was almost wholly dependent on the internet. In short, the internet continues to become more and more indispensable to modern life. This year’s Internet Hero nominees reflect the value that the internet brings to our daily lives and how important it has become to modern society in the UK.

ISPA 2021 Internet Heroes Nominees

Rory Cellan-Jones - As the BBC’s Technology Correspondent since 2007, Rory has been responsible for keeping the public informed about technology in an accessible and meaningful way. Keeping millions of people aware of highly technical technological issues when their level of understanding about the internet is low is no small ask. The importance of this should not be underestimated, especially given the need for technological literacy in the modern world. Rory has been instrumental in communicating these issues from the age of dial up to the age of gigabit broadband. After 40 years of service to the BBC, he is retiring later this month.

Telecoms Infrastructure Project Team – TIP has been a hugely important group for driving infrastructure solutions to advance global connectivity. The positive signs that 58% of the world are now internet users show how TIP are helping achieve their goal, and while there is a long way to go, their work up until now deserves to be recognised. Special credit should also go to their work in promoting open industry standards and technology diversification, such as OpenRAN.

Helen Milner OBE – The Good Things Foundation has been vital in helping promote digital inclusion at a time when the pandemic has made digital literacy crucial to access health information and keep in contact with loved ones.  The Good Things Foundation has provided practical support to millions of people to achieve social change. The numbers speak for themselves – 3.5 million people supported to gain digital skills shows the progress made. Their work with Government, ISPs and wider industry has been hugely important to champion a digitally included nation. We believe Helen Milner OBE is absolutely due praise for her work as CEO of the Good Things Foundation.