Purpose - Given the increasingly significant investments in high-speed broadband (HSB) internationally and the heightened rhetoric surrounding its benefits, the purpose of this paper is to assess the social impact of HSB. Design/methodology/approach - Based on a case study concerning HSB delivered in the ambit of Australia's National Broadband Network (NBN), the study contributes a conceptual framework to evaluate the social impact of HSB initiatives. Findings - The authors found that key sectors, including education, health and community development, should be critically assessed across pertinent dimensions in evaluating the social impact of HSB. Practical implications - The framework provided in this study is significant as it can be used strategically by managers and policy makers in both leveraging HSB opportunities in key sectors and monitoring the performance of such initiatives. Originality/value - The research extends the technology adoption literature by contributing a framework that moves beyond the individual and organizational levels of technology adoption towards the wider sectoral level; and second, attempts to examine post-adoption impact of technology.