Center for Business and Public Policy Releases Research on Broadband Technology in Rural Areas

October 17, 2011

Professors John Mayo & Jeffrey Macher Discuss Recent Research and Its Application to Telecommunications Policy

Two Georgetown University McDonough School of Business professors discussed “Achieving Rural Universal Service in a Broadband Era: Emergent Evidence from the Evolution of Telephone Demand” at a luncheon on Capitol Hill Monday.

Hosted by the school’s Center for Business and Public Policy, speakers included John Mayo, professor of economics, business, and public policy and executive director of the center, and Jeffrey Macher, associate professor of strategy and economics and director of the center.

The Economic Policy Vignette was developed following in-depth research and analysis based on data provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) about households’ decisions to adopt wireline and wireless telephony. The authors conclude that increased wireless broadband access would help eliminate the economic challenges of geographic isolation and economic specialization for small businesses, farmers, ranchers, local governments, and others in rural America. 

Macher and Mayo explain how new, private-sector investment in wireless broadband could be the fastest path to achieving full universal access to high-speed Internet service in rural America. They find that spectrum constraints are one of the key impediments that have slowed the private sector’s ability to deploy wireless broadband in sparsely populated areas. The authors suggest that part of the policy solution is to accelerate efforts that allow spectrum to move from less highly valued uses to more highly valued uses. 

A copy of the Economic Policy Vignette can be found here.

Media who are interested in the report should contact Teresa Mannix, director of media relations, at (202) 687-4080 or

About Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business
Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business is a premier business school located at the center of world politics and business in Washington, D.C. Some 1,400 undergraduates, 1,000 MBA students, and 500 participants in executive education programs study business with an intensive focus on leadership and a global perspective. Founded in 1957, the business school today resides in the new Rafik B. Hariri Building, a state-of-the-art facility that blends the tradition of Georgetown University with forward-thinking functionality. For more information about Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business, visit

About the Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy
The Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy is an academic, non-partisan research center whose mission is to engage scholars, business people and policymakers in relevant inquiries and dialogue to impact key business, economic and public policy issues confronting American and international businesses today.  Housed at Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business, the Georgetown Center was created in 2002 to encourage thoughtful discussion and to document and disseminate knowledge on a range of issues in the public interest.