November 14, 2007

Measuring Broadband

Appendix

Measuring Broadband: Problems and Possibilities

A Workshop at the DC Office of
The Pew Research Center
1615 L St St. NW, 7th Floor
Washington DC

June 28, 2006

Co-sponsored by

Pew Internet & American Life Project
University of Texas at Austin, with support from the National Science Foundation
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Communications infrastructure plays an increasingly important role in our society. It is a critical infrastructure relied upon to run public utilities, transportation, and security systems. In a global economy, all manner of enterprises rely on communications infrastructure to deliver new and innovative services to customers, coordinate production, and reduce transaction costs. On a social level, the internet’s interactive nature allows people to create, consume, and exchange a wide range of information, which fosters social connectedness and helps build social capital. At the household level, expenditures on services delivered over broadband may soon exceed what formerly were expenditures on telephone and cable television services, and account for a major slice of consumer spending. Measurement and monitoring of changes like these will be critical to our nation’s understanding of its economic and societal health. Yet accurate understanding depends on data that is not now collected in consistent and predictable ways.

In the United States, there is an explicit national policy goal to have competitive and affordable highspeed internet service widely available to Americans by 2007. But techniques currently used to measure broadband infrastructure and user adoption, which would help monitor progress toward that goal, have limitations. Current federal reporting requirements do not sufficiently measure deployment of high-speed infrastructure; state and local requirements are piecemeal and inconsistent. Virtually no detailed and scientifically collected data are available on critical economic variables, like pricing and measures of quality of service. Although private surveys presently do an adequate job of measuring the broad contours of users’ broadband adoption and online behavior, exclusive reliance on this approach may become problematic as networks evolve, services are increasingly differentiated, and connection speeds vary by vendor or class of service.

This one-day, invitation-only workshop will gather leading academics, government statisticians, and practitioners in the private and non-profit sectors who have conducted research or gathered empirical data in this field.30 The objectives of the workshop are to identify gaps and shortcomings in current measurement techniques and propose improvements. Participants will be drawn from universities and public policy research organizations that have worked on measurement of broadband deployment and use, and from government organizations and statistical agencies collecting data related to broadband.

The goals of the workshop will be to:

  1. Develop recommendations on how to improve data collection on the communications infrastructure, both its scope and economic and social impact.
  2. Stimulate research and experimentation among researchers in the public and private sectors that will result in policy relevant research on economic and social dimensions of the “broadband society.”

To the extent that the workshop’s recommendations are aimed at government agencies, the agencies most interested in the workshop are likely to be the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) in the U.S. Department of Commerce, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in the Labor Department, and the Federal Communications Commission.

Agenda

8:00 – 8:30 AM
Continental Breakfast

 

8:30 – 8:50 AM
Introduction: Workshop Organizers
Kenneth Flamm, University of Texas
Sharon Gillett, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
John Horrigan, Pew Internet & American Life Project

Overview and Framing: Jack Triplett, Brookings Institution

 

8:50 – 10:15 AM
Panel: Perspectives on Economic Research Using Broadband-Related Data
Moderator: Charles R. Hulten, University of Maryland

Panelists will briefly outline the purpose of their research, the data they used, and the challenges they encountered. Panel discussion will focus on changes and additions to current data collections that would significantly improve economic research related to broadband deployment and use.

Panelists:

  • Anindya Chaudhuri, University of Texas
  • Kenneth Flamm, University of Texas
  • Chris Forman, Carnegie Mellon University and Shane Greenstein, Northwestern University
  • Avi Goldfarb, University of Toronto
  • John Horrigan, Pew Internet & American Life Project
  • William Lehr and Sharon Gillett, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • James Prieger, University of California Davis
  • Gregory Rosston, Stanford University
  • Scott Wallsten, American Enterprise Institute

10:15 – 10:30 AM

Coffee Break

 

10:30 – 11:30 AM
Panel : Other Research Perspectives
Moderator: Shane Greenstein, Northwestern University

Panelists from engineering and non-economic social science disciplines will complement the previous panel’s perspectives on research purpose, data, challenges, and improvements.

Panelists:

Panelists from engineering and non-economic social science disciplines will complement the previous panel’s perspectives on research purpose, data, challenges, and improvements.

  • KC Claffy and Tom Vest, University of California San Diego (CAIDA)
  • Martha Fuentes-Bautista and Nobuya Inagaki, University of Texas
  • Amy Glasmeier, Pennsylvania State University
  • Tony Grubesic, University of Cincinnati
  • Judith Mariscal, CIDE, Ciencias Sociales
  • Jorge Schement, Pennsylvania State University
  • Sharon Strover, University of Texas
  • Rahul Tongia, Carnegie Mellon University

11:30 AM – 12:15 PM
Panel: Private Sector Perspectives
Moderator: David Young, Verizon

Industry participants will provide brief overviews of their research needs, the data they use and the problems they encounter. Panel discussion will focus on firms as both users and producers of broadband-related data, and dealing with competitive sensitivities.

Panelists:

  • Richard Clarke, AT&T
  • Roman Krzanowski, Verizon
  • Michael Nelson, IBM
  • Robert Pepper, Cisco
  • Chuck White, TNS Telecoms
  • Bill McCready, Knowledge Networks

Discussants:

  • Derek Turner, Free Press
  • Frederick Weingarten, American Library Association

 

12:15 – 1:15 PM

Lunch

 

1:15 – 2:45 PM

Roundtable: Government Data Collection
Moderator: Jack Triplett, Brookings Institution

Attendees from federal and state government agencies will answer questions about the data they collect, its intended purpose and associated challenges. 

 

2:45 – 3:00 PM

Coffee Break

 

3:00 – 3:45 PM
Roundtable: Government Policy Perspectives
Moderator: Robert Pepper, Cisco

Selected government attendees will discuss the needs, uses, and challenges for data in broadband-related policy making. Panelists will include Lisa Sutherland, Senate Commerce Committee Staff, Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK), and Colin Crowell, Telecommunications Staff, Rep. Ed Markey (DMA).

 

3:45 – 4:45 PM
Roundtable Discussion: An Agenda for Improving Data Collection and Use
Moderators: Workshop Organizers
(Flamm, Gillett, and Horrigan)

 

4:45 – 5:00 PM
Summary and Consensus Recommendations
(Flamm, Gillett, and Horrigan) 

List of Attendees

List of Attendees

Anna Aizcorbe, U.S. Department. of Commerce

Dennis Alvord, U.S. Department. of Commerce

BK Atrostic, U.S. Census Bureau

Kim Bayard, Federal Reserve Board

Ellen Burton, Federal Communications Commission

David Byrne, Federal Reserve Board

Kenneth Carter, Federal Communications Commission

Anindya Chaudhuri, University of Texas at Austin

Barbara Cherry, Federal Communications Commission

KC Claffy, Cooperative Association for Internet Data Analysis

Richard Clarke, AT&T

Michael Clements, Government Accountability Office

Mark Cooper, Consumer Federation of America

Carol A. Corrado, The Federal Reserve Board

Colin Crowell, Office of Rep. Edward J. Markey

William Ennen, Mass Tech

Kenneth Flamm, University of Texas at Austin

Christopher Forman, Carnegie Mellon University

Martha Fuentes-Bautista, University of Texas at Austin

David Gabel, Queens College City University of New York

Sharon Gillett, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Amy Glasmeier, Pennsylvania State University

Avi Goldfarb, University of Toronto

Shane Greenstein, Northwestern University

Anthony Grubesic, University of Cincinnati

Michael Holdway, U.S. Department of Labor

John Horrigan, Pew Internet & American Life Project

Charles R. Hulten, University of Maryland

C. Suzanne Iacono, National Science Foundation

Nobuo Inagaki, University of Texas at Austin

Sherille Ismail, Federal Communications Commission

David Johnson, U.S. Census Bureau

Roman Krzanowski, Verizon

William Lehr, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Judith Mariscal, CIDE, Mexico

Robert McCelland, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

James McConnaughey, U.S. Department. of Commerce

William McCready, Knowledge Networks

Brian Mefford, Connect Kentucky

Thomas Mesenbourg, Bureau of Census

Michael Nelson, IBM

Stephen D. Oliner, The Federal Reserve Board

Robert Pepper, Cisco

Kenneth Peres, Communications Workers of America

Melissa Pollak, National Science Foundation

James Prieger, University of California, Davis

Gregory Rosston, Stanford University

Jorge Schement, Pennsylvania State University

Christina Speck, U.S. Department. of Commerce

Sharon Strover, University of Texas at Austin

Rahul Tongia, Carnegie Mellon University

Jack Triplett, The Brookings Institution

Eric Van Wambeke, California Public Utilities Commission

Tom Vest Cooperative, Association for Internet Data Analysis

Scott Wallsten, Progress and Freedom Foundation

Philip Webre, U.S. Congressional Budget Office

Chuck White, TNS Telecoms

Phyllis White, California Public Utilities Commission

Irene Wu, Federal Communications Commission

Derek Turner, Free Press

David Young, Verizon

  1. This workshop is a follow-on activity to a June 2005 University of Texas at Austin-organized workshop on “Internet Use in the Americas,” supported by the NSF.