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An Internet periphery study: Network centrality and clustering for mobile access in Bhutan


  • Giovannetti, Emanuele
  • Sigloch, Sebastian


This paper explores the upstream network connectivity structure of Bhutan׳s monopolistic supplier of broadband mobile access. It is claimed that the presence of a hierarchical and well interconnected network, matched with a price-matching promise, may provide a crucial early mover׳s advantage against the second country׳s mobile provider, and entrant into the broadband mobile access segment. An upstream mobile connectivity dataset based on a large number of traceroutes was generated using Portolan, an Android׳s smartphones application. These data were used to perform an Internet Periphery Analysis highlighting the role played by existing connection agreements between Bhutan׳s incumbent network and other key international Internet providers. These international operators emerge as critical and central nodes for the Bhutanese interconnection network, a role providing them with a favourable bargaining position along the Internet end to end connectivity chain. The analysis identifies the need for regulatory authorities to address features of the hierarchical structure of network connectivity, in order to ensure cost-based network access, a precondition for entry and fair competition in the broadband mobile market.

Suggested Citation

  • Giovannetti, Emanuele & Sigloch, Sebastian, 2015. "An Internet periphery study: Network centrality and clustering for mobile access in Bhutan," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 608-622.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:telpol:v:39:y:2015:i:7:p:608-622
    DOI: 10.1016/j.telpol.2014.11.006

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kezang & Whalley, Jason, 2004. "Telecommunications in the land of the Thunder Dragon: recent developments in Bhutan," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(11), pages 785-800, December.
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    3. D'Ignazio, Alessio & Giovannetti, Emanuele, 2009. "Asymmetry and discrimination in Internet peering: evidence from the LINX," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 441-448, May.
    4. Giovannetti, Emanuele & Ristuccia, Cristiano Andrea, 2005. "Estimating market power in the Internet backbone. Using the IP transit Band-X database," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 269-284, May.
    5. Lippert, Steffen & Spagnolo, Giancarlo, 2008. "Internet peering as a network of relations," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 33-49, February.
    6. Sgroi, Daniel, 2008. "Social network theory, broadband and the future of the World Wide Web," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 62-84, February.
    7. Bourreau, Marc & Cambini, Carlo & Hoernig, Steffen, 2012. "Geographic Access Rules and Investments," CEPR Discussion Papers 9013, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    8. Syngjoo Choi & Andrea Galeotti & Sanjeev Goyal, 2017. "Trading in Networks: Theory and Experiments," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 784-817.
    9. Frank Mathewson & Ralph Winter, 1998. "The Law and Economics of Resale Price Maintenance," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 13(1), pages 57-84, April.
    10. repec:oup:jcomle:v:2:y:2006:i:1:p:43-69. is not listed on IDEAS
    11. D’Ignazio, Alessio & Giovannetti, Emanuele, 2014. "Continental differences in the clusters of integration: Empirical evidence from the digital commodities global supply chain networks," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 147(PB), pages 486-497.
    12. Chaim Fershtman & Neil Gandal, 2011. "Direct and indirect knowledge spillovers: the “social network” of open‐source projects," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 42(1), pages 70-91, March.
    13. Arbatskaya, Maria, 2001. "Can low-price guarantees deter entry?," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(9), pages 1387-1406, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sigloch, Sebastian & Giovannetti, Emanuele & Fennell, Shailaja, 2016. "An exploratory network analysis of mobile broadband provider's infrastructure relationships in Tamil Nadu, India," 27th European Regional ITS Conference, Cambridge (UK) 2016 148705, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).


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