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From the “broadband ditch” to the release of the 2010 US national broadband plan. A short history of the broadband penetration debate in the US


  • Jean-Paul SIMON

    (Senior scientist at the Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS), European Commission, Directorate-General JRC, (Sevilla, Spain))


The paper provides an historical account of the policy debate that took place in the United States after the 2007 release of the OECD's broadband statistics. It explains why and in what context such a debate occurred (lack of relevant statistics from the FCC, dissatisfaction of some stakeholders with the deregulation of broadband, role of new players). The paper reviews the policy options proposed by the main players to foster the deployment of broadband, among others the potential inclusion of broadband in the scope of the US universal service, the need for a national policy, and implementation/funding issues. It puts into perspective the national broadband plan proposed by the FCC in March 2010.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-Paul SIMON, 2010. "From the “broadband ditch” to the release of the 2010 US national broadband plan. A short history of the broadband penetration debate in the US," Communications & Strategies, IDATE, Com&Strat dept., vol. 1(80), pages 43-66, 4th quart.
  • Handle: RePEc:idt:journl:cs8002

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Goldfarb, Avi & Prince, Jeff, 2008. "Internet adoption and usage patterns are different: Implications for the digital divide," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 2-15, March.
    2. Erik Bohlin & Orada Teppayayon, 2009. "Broadband universal service: A future path for Europe?," International Journal of Management and Network Economics, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 1(3), pages 275-298.
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    More about this item


    broadband; competition; industrial policies; government intervention; universal service; open internet; deregulation; rankings/ benchmarking countries.;

    JEL classification:

    • L50 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - General
    • L52 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Industrial Policy; Sectoral Planning Methods
    • L95 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Gas Utilities; Pipelines; Water Utilities
    • L98 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Government Policy
    • L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software


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