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A new regional classification for mobile telecommunications diffusion policy in China: Using the innovation and imitation coefficients


  • Lima, Jinyang
  • Nama, Changi
  • Kimb, Seongcheol


While Chinese telecommunications industry has been continuously developing, the penetration rate of mobile telecommunications by province in China is distributed from less than 40% to larger than 100% in 2009. This regional disparity in terms of mobile telecommunications penetration rate is due to various socioeconomic factors such as income level, occupation structure, education level. The purpose of this paper is to suggest a new approach for regional classification based on the diffusion characteristics of each province for more effective and efficient mobile telecommunication's diffusion policy and strategy. First, this paper estimates diffusion parameters, including an innovation coefficient and imitation coefficient of 31 provinces using mobile subscription data, and then classifies the provinces into six groups using cluster analysis based on the estimated innovation coefficient and imitation coefficients. The clusters are also significantly different in terms of socioeconomic perspective such as income level. The results of cluster analysis imply that the traditional regional classifications are too simple and should be divided more in detail in terms of innovation and imitation coefficients in the case of developing mobile telecommunications strategies. This new regional classification (six clusters) can be used for not only 3G diffusion policy but also the future mobile telecommunications technology diffusion policy. In China, 3G service was started in January 2009 as Chinese government awarded 3G cellular licenses. Finally, the managerial and political implications are addressed based on the new regional classification.

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  • Lima, Jinyang & Nama, Changi & Kimb, Seongcheol, 2012. "A new regional classification for mobile telecommunications diffusion policy in China: Using the innovation and imitation coefficients," 23rd European Regional ITS Conference, Vienna 2012 60358, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:itse12:60358

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Chen, Zhuo & Huffman, Wallace E. & Rozelle, Scott, 2009. "Farm technology and technical efficiency: Evidence from four regions in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 153-161, June.
    2. Sylvie Démurger & Jeffrey D. Sachs & Wing Thye Woo & Shuming Bao & Gene Chang & Andrew Mellinger, 2002. "Geography, Economic Policy, and Regional Development in China," Asian Economic Papers, MIT Press, vol. 1(1), pages 146-197.
    3. Banerjee, Aniruddha & Ros, Agustin J., 2004. "Patterns in global fixed and mobile telecommunications development: a cluster analysis," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 107-132, March.
    4. Chen, Zhuo & Song, Shunfeng, 2008. "Efficiency and technology gap in China's agriculture: A regional meta-frontier analysis," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 287-296, June.
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    Regional classification; Innovation coefficient; Imitation coefficient; Cluster analysis; Mobile telecommunications; China;

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