Shared or exclusive radio waves? a dilemma gone astray



Publication Details

Freyens, B. P. (2010). Shared or exclusive radio waves? a dilemma gone astray. Telematics and Informatics, 27 (3), 293-304.


Ever increasing demand for commercial wireless applications has forced a rethink of radiowave coordination arrangements. Attempts to reform prescriptive centralised approacheshave targeted a model of exclusive usage rights through ownership and markets, and aregime of shared usage through free access and collaborative platforms. Both have beenquite successful. However, the diametrically opposed ideological nature of these two alternativeshas also polarised the reform movement. Multidisciplinary approaches and thepurely conceptual nature of existing policy research have only exacerbated these differences.I argue here that this policy dilemma has erred. At a conceptual level, the focuson two reform regimes mischaracterises the true set of policy choices. At a practical level,the emphasis on extreme views of these two regimes is an inaccurate depiction of actualpolicy reforms. Furthermore, the implied incompatibility between the two reform regimesbelies their complementary nature.

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