Imagining the Internet Predictions Project

In the fall of 2000, Elon University and the Pew Internet & American Life Project formed a partnership to build the Imagining the Internet Predictions Database, giving students and faculty the opportunity to do research about the Internet and share their findings with a wider audience.

The first project, completed in February 2001, was called One Neighborhood, One Week on the Internet. It chronicled Internet usage by 24 families during a one-week period. Journalism students wrote feature stories about each of the families, and also studied the data collected during the week in family diaries. Janna Quitney Anderson, assistant professor of communications and director of Internet projects in the Elon School of Communications, directed the project.

The second project, completed in spring 2002, was the pilot Internet Predictions project directed by Connie Ledoux Book, assistant professor of communications in the Elon School of Communications.

The initial predictions project set the stage for the third Elon-Pew project, the building of "Imagining the Internet," the online database, under Anderson's direction. Research to find and log more than 4,200 1990-1995 internet predictions from stakeholders and skeptics took place in 2003; the "Share Your Vision" and "Experts Survey" pieces were completed at the suggestion of Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Internet & American Life Project, in 2004, with the unveiling of the site in early 2005.

About Elon University
Elon University is ranked among the top 10 Southern universities by U.S. News & World Report and is named among the nation's best colleges and universities by Princeton Review and Kaplan/Newsweek. With an enrollment of 4,796, Elon offers students 50 majors in Elon College, the College of Arts and Sciences, and schools of communications, business and education.

Elon is recognized by the National Survey of Student Engagement as one of the most effective universities in the nation in actively engaging students in learning. Forbes and Intel Corp. have named Elon University one of the top 50 colleges and universities in the nation for wireless computing access. Elon's undergraduate students have been active participants in all of the Elon/Pew research projects. As a national model of engaged learning, Elon seamlessly blends academic and co-curricular activities, especially in flagship programs known as the Elon Experiences. Seventy-five percent of students complete internships, 88 percent participate in volunteer service projects, 32 percent hold leadership positions in 150 student organizations,9 percent do formal undergraduate research and 63 percent study abroad, distinguishing Elon as the nation's top master's-level university in the number of undergraduates studying internationally.

About the Pew Internet & American Life Project
The Pew Internet and American Life Project creates and funds original, academic-quality research that explores the impact of the Internet on children, families, communities, the workplace, schools, health care and civic/political life. The Project aims to be an authoritative source for timely information on the Internet's growth and societal impact, through research that is scrupulously impartial.

The basic work-product of the center includes phone and online surveys; data-gathering efforts that often involve classic shoe-leather reporting from government agencies, academics, and other experts; fly-on-the-wall observations of what people do when they are online; and other efforts that try to examine individual and group behavior. The Project releases 15-20 pieces of research a year, varying in size, scope and ambition.

The Pew Internet & American Life Project is a non-profit initiative of the Pew Research Center for People and the Press. Support for the project is provided by The Pew Charitable Trusts. The Tides Center in San Francisco administers the Project's grant from Pew. For more information, see the Web site:

©2004 Elon University/Pew Internet and American Life Project. All rights reserved.
Comments, suggestions or feedback? Contact us at Last Modified:  1/9/05