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Making Broadband Accessible To All – Report & Event

Aman Grewal · June 15, 2011

On 19th of May I attended the launch event  of the report ‘Making Broadband Accessible To All‘ which was commissioned by Vodafone and the Web Foundation. I was happy to return to the London School of Economics and Political Science, my old hunting ground after a long time. The event itself was organized by POLIS. It is a joint initiative of LSE’s Department of Media and Communications and the London College of Communication,aimed at working journalists, people in public life and students in the UK and around the world.

The report considers the potential for extending access beyond affluent urban users to the wider population and contains lessons for network service providers, data service businesses, governments and regulators. This is the 12th in the series of public policy papers which discuss the socio-economic impact of mobile technology (SIM). I was interested in the section: Building next generation broadband networks in emerging markets. This paper assessed the economic viability of fibre and wireless networks with key economic drivers between developed and emerging markets.

Before joining the foundation, I was contemplating a project that involved linking up villages to a vast fibre network in India. Almost all of my primary concerns related to economics have been answered in this fantastic paper. Remaining neutral on the aspect of connectivity, I believe it is important to estimate the actual needs vis a vis historical usage data (if available) before the decision makers arrive at a choice. It is more important in the context of developing countries, considering the investments involved. In all a very nice report. Looking forward to the next in this series.

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