Different Paths to Universal Access: The Impact of Policy and Regulation on Broadband Diffusion in The Developed and Developing Worlds
39 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2012
Date Written: September 24, 2011
We examine the broadband digital divide by analyzing the impact of policy and regulation on broadband Internet diffusion. Our multiple regression analysis shows that factors that determine broadband diffusion in technologically developed countries do not necessarily have the same impact in less developed countries. We show that in technological developed countries, there is greater broadband diffusion in countries that make a higher financial investment in information and communication technologies and have effective regulatory and administrative practices at the national level. While these results hold in technologically developing nations, a competitive telecommunications sector also lead to greater broadband diffusion but the presence of a national telecommunications regulatory authority has a negative impact. These results suggest that the path to widespread availability and use of broadband requires different strategies depending on a nation’s level of technological development.
Keywords: Broadband digital divide, diffusion of innovations, financial investment, global information society, governance indicators, national strategy, public policy, technological development, telecommunications competition, telecommunications regulation
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