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Internet Architecture and Innovation

Author

Listed:
  • Barbara van Schewick

    () (Stanford University)

Abstract

The Internet's remarkable growth has been fueled by innovation. New applications continually enable new ways of using the Internet, and new physical networking technologies increase the range of networks over which the Internet can run. Questions about the relationship between innovation and the Internet's architecture have shaped the debates over open access to broadband networks, network neutrality, nondiscriminatory network management, and future Internet architecture. In Internet Architecture and Innovation, Barbara van Schewick explores the economic consequences of Internet architecture, offering a detailed analysis of how it affects the economic environment for innovation. Van Schewick describes the design principles on which the Internet's original architecture was based—modularity, layering, and the end-to-end arguments—and shows how they shaped the original architecture of the Internet. She analyzes in detail how the original Internet architecture affected innovation—in particular, the development of new applications—and the how changing the architecture would affect this kind of innovation. Van Schewick concludes that the original architecture of the Internet fostered application innovation. Current changes that deviate from the Internet's original design principles reduce the amount and quality of application innovation, limit users' ability to use the Internet as they see fit, and threaten the Internet's ability to realize its economic, social, cultural, and political potential. If left to themselves, network providers will continue to change the internal structure of the Internet in ways that are good for them but not necessarily for the rest of us. Government intervention may be needed to save the social benefits associated with the Internet's original design principles.

Suggested Citation

  • Barbara van Schewick, 2010. "Internet Architecture and Innovation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262013975, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:mtp:titles:0262013975
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Shane Greenstein & Martin Peitz & Tommaso Valletti, 2016. "Net Neutrality: A Fast Lane to Understanding the Trade-Offs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 30(2), pages 127-150, Spring.
    2. Kranz, Johann & Picot, Arnold & Roemer, Benedikt, 2011. "Unlocking the potential of the smart metering technology: How can regulation level the playing-field for new services in smart grids?," 22nd European Regional ITS Conference, Budapest 2011: Innovative ICT Applications - Emerging Regulatory, Economic and Policy Issues 52183, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    3. Grove, Nico & Agic, Damir & Sedlmeir, Joachim, 2013. "Reporting policies of ISPs: Do general terms and conditions (GTCs) match with the reality?," 24th European Regional ITS Conference, Florence 2013 88473, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    4. Alison Powell & Alissa Cooper, 2011. "Net neutrality discourses: comparing advocacy and regulatory arguments in the United States and the United Kingdom," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 39024, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    5. Grove, Nico & Agic, Damir & Sedlmeir, Joachim, 2012. "Network neutrality and consumer discrimination: Comparing ISP's GTCs and DPI application," 23rd European Regional ITS Conference, Vienna 2012 60403, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    6. Martinez, Luis & Alvarez, Oscar Alvarez & Markendahl, Jan, 2015. "Study of the potential impact of Quality-of-Experience based services on Net Neutrality principles," 26th European Regional ITS Conference, Madrid 2015 127168, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    7. Gasser, Urs & Palfrey, John, 2011. "Fostering Innovation and Trade in the Global Information Society: The Different Facets and Roles of Interoperability," Papers 250, World Trade Institute.
    8. Bauer, Johannes M. & Shim, Woohyun, 2012. "Regulation and digital innovation: Theory and evidence," 23rd European Regional ITS Conference, Vienna 2012 60364, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    innovation; internet architecture; applications;

    JEL classification:

    • O3 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights

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