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

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. Blair Levin [More...] Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

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

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. Embedded image permalink Moderator Scott Wallsten of the Technology Policy Institute, with panelists Mignon Clyburn, James Assey, Blair Levin, Gregory Rosston, and Bradley Wimmer. [more...] Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

White House Releases Report on Community-Based Broadband Solutions, Touting Municipal Competition for Gigabit Networks

WASHINGTON, January 14, 2015 - The White House on Tuesday released a report, "Community-Based Broadband Solutions: The Benefits of Competition and Choice for Community Development and Highspeed Internet Access," seeking to bolster President Obama's new push for Gigabit Networks. The report states: Affordable, reliable access to high speed broadband is critical to U.S. economic growth… Keep Reading

White House Supports Growing National Movement of Local Leaders for Gigabit Networks

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nbol8oMNggs WASHINGTON, January 14, 2015 - The White House on Tuesday announced efforts to end laws that harm broadband competition, several steps to support a growing national movement of local leaders for Gigabit Networks, plus new federal funding and a new initiative to support community broadband. The announcements came on Tuesday in advance of an… Keep Reading

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

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… Keep Reading

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

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… Keep Reading

Infrastructure

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

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… Keep Reading

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

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… Keep Reading

Connect Nevada Broadband Summit on Nov. 18 to Explore Broadband in Education

November 15, 2013 - Nevada has only two metropolitan areas (Las Vegas and Reno), 80 percent of its land owned by the federal government, and no fiber-optic wires that connect the two cities, said the head of the state's non-profit broadband initiative. A deeply rural demography and highly remote geography present some tough obstacles for… Keep Reading

Tom Wheeler Surging; Profiles of Other Prospective Candidates to be FCC Chairman: Susan Crawford and Blair Levin

WASHINGTON, April 15, 2013 – Tom Wheeler, one of the most-frequently mentioned names to take the chairmanship of the Federal Communications Commission, remains perhaps the leading contender for the role, according to a Friday telecom update from Medley Global Advisors. “Venture capitalist and former lobbyist Tom Wheeler picked up a strong vote of confidence from a… Keep Reading

The Year in Broadband, 2012: BroadbandBreakfast’s Guide to the Top 10 Events

December 18, 2012 – The year 2012 has provided significant progress in broadband within the United States. Whether through policy developments, or through technologies advancing the rate of internet speeds, the business case for making use of those higher speeds is also progressing in a meaningful way. It’s almost as if the presidential and other… Keep Reading

How Broadband Helps Make Cities Smarter at the Breakfast Club

WASHINGTON, September 23, 2011 - Broadband is an essential ingredient in allowing cities of the future to ensure better services, promote better jobs, and become more livable. Here are both the five-minute highlight version, and a full-length version, of the September Broadband Breakfast Club. Five-Minute Highlight Version: Making Cities of the Future Smarter through Broadband from Broadband Breakfast. Full-Length Version: Making Cities of the Future Smarter through Broadband from Broadband Breakfast. Keep Reading

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