Encyclopedia of Law and Economics

2019 Edition
| Editors: Alain Marciano, Giovanni Battista Ramello


  • Alden F. AbbottEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-7753-2_471


Telecommunications involves the transmission of information without change in the form or content. Telecommunications networks increase in value as the number of users rises (“network effect”) and the rise of the Internet and wireless communications has bestowed huge economic benefits on countries worldwide. The development of telecommunications has been heavily influenced by regulatory regimes. Regulation in the United States has featured efforts to restrain private monopoly power and promote market allocation of spectrum, while European regulation recently has focused on the privatization of former state telecommunications monopolies and the transition to a pan-European regulatory regime. As the United States transitions away from US government stewardship of the Internet and toward a more global form of Internet governance, the International Telecommunication Union is seeking to play a greater role in Internet oversight. Emerging telecommunications policy issues include the privatization of the radio spectrum, “net neutrality” regulation aimed at treating all data traffic equally, and the growth of “cloud computing” and “big data” compilations.

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Further Reading

  1. Haring, J Telecommunications. In: The concise encyclopedia of law and economics (2nd ed.), http://www.econlib.org/library/Enc/Telecommunications.html. Accessed 17 Mar 2015
  2. World Bank and International Telecommunications Union, Telecommunications Regulation Handbook, Colin Blackman and Lara Srivastava eds. (10th Anniversary ed. 2011)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Heritage FoundationWashingtonUSA