Telephone Number Allocation: A Property Rights Approach
Posted: 22 May 2002
This paper analyzes the coordination, competition and resource allocation problems associated with telephone numbers, and it analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of various allocation mechanisms from a property rights perspective. The paper proposes to move away from current administrative number allocation procedures to a market-based auction mechanism, which can be similar to spectrum auctions. The paper also argues that number portability is essential not only for reducing consumer switching costs, but also for efficient investment into a number's value, as only number portability enables telephone users to obtain unfettered property rights in their telephone numbers.
Keywords: telephone numbers, property rights, number portability
JEL Classification: D23, L51, L96
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation