Posts Tagged ‘Blair Levin’

Former Architect of National Broadband Plan Says That Every City Needs a Broadband Plan

Broadband's Impact, FCC, Gigabit Networks, National Broadband Plan September 14th, 2015

September 14, 2015 – Every city should create a city-wide broadband plan of its own, said the former director of the National Broadband Plan, in wide-ranging speech touting four strategies useful for different types of city broadband plans.

Speaking on Friday at the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Officers annual conference in San Diego, Blair Levin of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program and the group Gig-U, said that every city should tackle four key strategies: (1) Getting fiber deeper into neighborhoods; (2) Using community WiFi; (3) Getting everyone online; and (4) Promoting innovative civic applications for broadband.

Levin, the former architect of the Federal Communications Commission’s broadband plan, crafted from 2009 to 2010, said that the United States was about the 20th country to adopt such a plan for the deployment of high-speed internet. Nearly 150 countries have one now.

“With cities, we’re where we were with countries in 2010. Several dozen have them,” Levin said. “But now, such a plan is becoming table stakes for any city that wants its residents to be part of the 21st Century Information Economy.”

In his remarks, Levin addressed the pivotal role that Google Fiber has played in spurring the development of Gigabit Networks. Indeed, on Thursday, Google announced upcoming fiber-optic deployments in three new cities: Irvine, Calif., Louisville, Kentucky; and San Diego.

He categories the types of cities, and they relative trajectories towards Gigabit Networks, as follows:

“The first set of communities is those that either have or are likely to see Google Fiber enter. For these, the starting strategy is pretty simple. Accelerate to the extent possible, Google’s entry.” Whether or not Google comes, such cities will be well-situated for others, as well.

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While Universal Service Reforms Show Promise, Politics Clouds Fund’s Future

Broadband's Impact August 19th, 2015

ASPEN, Colorado, August 19, 2015 – In spite of several positive efforts to reform the complex and dated rules that govern the Federal Communication Commission’s universal service fund, key decisions surrounding the $8 billion annual fund remain ineluctably political.

That was the message shared by panelists, including a commissioner at the FCC, speaking at a session on Tuesday at the Technology Policy Institute’s annual forum here.

For example, the panelists — which also include two economists, a cable industry lobbyist and the former director of the National Broadband Plan — applauded efforts to bring greater economic efficiency to telecom network construction through a system known as a “reverse auction.”

They also supported efforts to promote broadband adoption by providing income-based vouchers for the purpose of internet services.

But decisions about the allocation of funds within the USF — and the key question of how the fund is to be paid for — remain political hot potatoes.

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Moderator Scott Wallsten of the Technology Policy Institute, with panelists Mignon Clyburn, James Assey, Blair Levin, Gregory Rosston, and Bradley Wimmer.

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Broadband Conferences This Week in Three Time Zones to Consider National, Regional, State Initiatives

Broadband's Impact June 8th, 2015

June 8, 2015 – Broadband conference this week in three time zones will consider the next stages of nation-, region- and state-wide broadband initiatives.

The conferences, in the Mountain, Central and Eastern Time zones, begin on Monday and Tuesday in Vail, Colorado with the “Mountain Connect” program. The program includes keynote presentations by Connected Nation Exchange and Dave Zelenok, chief innovation officer for the city of Centennial.

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At Chicago’s McCormick Place, the web site Light Reading’s third annual Big Telecom Event on Tuesday and Wednesday includes an array of discussions about building Gigabit Networks across the country. On Tuesday, former National Broadband Plan Director Blair Levin participates in a panel discussion about “network services” for the Gigabit Age.

And on Thursday and Friday, in Albany, the New York State Broadband Program Office hosts its third annual broadband summit.  The summit this week will highly New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s new $1 billion state broadband program designed to leverage public and private resources, and which the program office called “the largest and boldest state investment in universal broadband deployment in the country.”

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At the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains in Vail, Moutain Connect aims to “facilitate and accelerate the maturation of broadband infrastructure transforming technology innovation, policy and sustainable economic prosperity for communities in Colorado.”
In 2014, the program featured keynote addresses from Phil Halstead, then-Executive Director of the Partnership for a Connected Illinois, plus individuals associated with a Wi-Fi network in Vail.

This year, in addition to Centennial, the program includes individuals from communities in Colorado including Longmont, Montrose, Vail and others. Also addressing the audience will be a range of companies offering services to build public-private networks.

Gigabit Networks Featured at Kansas City Broadband Conference This Week and Next

Broadband Data, Gigabit Networks January 12th, 2015

January 12, 2015 – Gigabit Networks will be a featured discussion and two Kansas City- based broadband conference this week and next week. “Gigabit City Summit” will take place in Kansas City, Missouri, from Tuesday, January 13 through Thursday, January 15. “The State of Broadband – And the Road Ahead” will take place in Kansas […]

Press Release: Blair Levin Joins Brookings as a Nonresident Senior Fellow

Broadband's Impact, FCC, Gigabit Networks, National Broadband Plan, Press Releases October 7th, 2014

WASHINGTON, October 6, 2014 —Blair Levin, telecommunications expert and former Communications & Society Fellow at the Aspen Institute, has joined the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program as a nonresident senior fellow, Bruce Katz, Brookings vice president and Metropolitan Policy Program co-director announced today. Blair will join the Program’s Metropolitan Infrastructure Initiative, which is directed by […]

Announcement and Support of Government Could Lead to First State-Wide Gigabit Network in Connecticut

Broadband's Impact, FCC, Fiber, Gigabit Networks September 16th, 2014

HARTFORD, Conn., September 16, 2014 – Connecticut state and city leaders on Monday announced a nationally-praised effort to build the first all-state Gigabit Network. The mayors of the state’s second- and fourth-largest cities, New Haven and Stamford, joined with state legislative leaders, the state’s Comptroller, and others to seek to create an “open access” fiber-optic […]

New Haven, West Hartford and Stamford to Announce Gigabit Network Initiative in Connecticut on Monday

Gigabit Networks September 12th, 2014

HARTFORD, Conn., September 12, 2014 – A major initiative to bring Gigabit Networks throughout Connecticut is scheduled to be announced here on Monday by mayors or deputy mayors of New Haven, West Hartford, Stamford, along with state legislative and executive branch leaders. The broadband infrastructure initiative will be announced at 2 p.m. on Monday. Blair […]

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler Promotes Google Fiber’s Impact on Competition and Gigabit Networks

Broadband's Impact, FCC, Fiber, Gigabit Networks, Net Neutrality September 5th, 2014

WASHINGTON, September 5, 2014 – Google Fiber has been perhaps the primary driver of the current push toward high-speed internet in the United States, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler said in a speech here yesterday on the future of broadband competition. In an otherwise general speech that failed to mention major communications companies like […]

In Partisan Vote, FCC Passes a Modified E-Rate Proposal for Spending Funds on Wi-Fi Connectivity

FCC, Universal Service July 15th, 2014

WASHINGTON, July 15, 2014 – The Federal Communications Commission on Friday voted to modernize of its E-Rate program Friday, reallocating funds from technologies considered obsolete to Wi-Fi based connectivity in schools and libraries. However, owing to strong skepticism from opponents over funding, the proposal was scaled back to $2 billion, down from its original $5 […]

Broadband Prioritization Not Such A Terrible Idea, Georgetown University Panelists Say

Broadband's Impact, FCC, National Broadband Plan June 17th, 2014

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2014 – Paid prioritization may not be such a bad idea – in fact, the notion that the entire internet needs to be treated equally is misleading, said panelists at a June 10 symposium on internet regulation. Internet users might have greater interest in seeing phone packets go through first than someone […]

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