Moving Beyond Dichotomy: Comparing Composite Telecommunications Regulatory Governance Indices

Brandie Martin Nonnecke

Pennsylvania State University; University of California, Berkeley

Krishna Jayakar

Pennsylvania State University

March 29, 2012

2012 TRPC

Despite an apparent consensus about the importance of sound telecommunications regulatory governance, there is no agreement among researchers about how to measure it. While dichotomous coding of de jure independence has served as a proxy to measure whether an agency’s regulatory governance is transparent, non-arbitrary, and free from political influence, we view measuring multiple components of regulatory governance through an index as providing a more nuanced understanding of facilitating or inhibiting factors. This paper builds extensively upon prior research on telecommunications regulatory governance in order to compare the composite telecommunications regulatory governance indices (TRGI) available in the literature, and to construct more parsimonious indices. Using a methodology labeled “qualitative meta-synthesis” based on synthesizing previously published indices, we construct six different indices using combinations of 32 different variables, and different weights. Data from the OECD database are used to re-create the five original indices from the literature as well as our own six composites. These indices are correlated with each other, and with independent measures of regulatory governance such as the World Bank’s Government Effectiveness Index and the Rule of Law Index. The results suggest that a parsimonious index of as few as seven variables is capable of measuring the quality of telecommunications governance in a country, at the same time making the selection of variables and their weighting in the index more systematic than in previously available indices.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 20

Keywords: governance, regulation, telecommunications, telecommunications index, OECD

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Date posted: April 3, 2012 ; Last revised: August 16, 2012

Suggested Citation

Nonnecke, Brandie Martin and Jayakar, Krishna, Moving Beyond Dichotomy: Comparing Composite Telecommunications Regulatory Governance Indices (March 29, 2012). 2012 TRPC. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2031254 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2031254

Contact Information

Brandie Martin Nonnecke (Contact Author)
Pennsylvania State University ( email )
College of Communications
Carnegie Building
University Park, PA 16802
United States
University of California, Berkeley ( email )
310 Barrows Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States
Krishna Jayakar
Pennsylvania State University ( email )
University Park
State College, PA 16802
United States
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