October 27, 2009
Barriers to Broadband Adoption in the U.S.
The Advanced Communications Law & Policy Institute (ACLP) at New York Law School is a public policy program that focuses on identifying and analyzing key legal, policy, and regulatory issues facing the advanced communications sector. ACLP co-directors Charles Davidson and Michael Santorelli have submitted their report, Barriers to Broadband Adoption (October 2009), to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for use during the development of its national broadband plan. The Report focuses on two demographic groups, Senior Citizens and People with Disabilities, and on four sectors of the economy, Telemedicine, Energy, Education and Government, that face a number of barriers to further adoption of broadband and broadband-enabled technologies.
Overview of Broadband Adoption Barriers
- For senior citizens, a general lack of adequate education and training are key contributors to a relatively low broadband adoption rate;
- For people with disabilities, widespread negative perceptions regarding the accessibility of broadband impedes further adoption and use of this technology;
- In the telemedicine sector, a number of outdated legal and policy frameworks hinder more robust adoption and use of broadband-enabled telemedicine services by patients and healthcare providers;
- In the energy arena, the highly regulated and conservative nature of many energy utilities challenges the dynamic nature of broadband and the ecosystem of innovation that it fosters;
- In the education space, lack of targeted funding and inadequate training impede further adoption and usage of broadband and broadband-enabled educational tools in schools across the country; and
- For government entities, institutional inertia and a lack of crossgovernment collaboration regarding best practices has slowed the effective integration of broadband into many government processes.
Hat tip to beSpacific. [JH]