Despite the widespread attention devoted to broadband and its anticipated impacts, surprisingly little is known regarding the linkages between broadband provision and establishment location. This is particularly true with respect to broadband speed. Given the understudied nature of this relationship, this study estimates econometric models to examine the linkages between broadband speed and firms using Ohio as a case study. Models results indicate broadband speed is most important to agricultural and rural firms. These findings provide case study support for policy and funding initiatives designed to improve the quality of broadband infrastructure in rural locations.
A foundational tenet of US broadband policy is that competition will yield benefits to consumers. An outstanding question related to this policy is whether stimulating competition has worked. This study outlines a methodology and index, the broadband evolution index (BEI) that facilitates the spatio-temporal analysis of broadband markets. Study results suggest lagging areas have caught up to leading areas in terms of the quantity of providers present. They have not caught up with respect to provider choice, platform choice, and access to high broadband speeds. This finding of a persistent urban/rural divide suggests public intervention in private markets is necessary, as is additional evaluation of the efficacy of these intervention strategies.
Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Industrial Composition with IVIID: An Interactive Visual Analytics Interface for Industrial Diversity
The industrial composition of places has received considerable attention because of the widespread belief that industrial diversity buffers regional economies from economic shocks. Subsequently, a variety of toolkits and indices have been developed with the goal of better capturing the compositional dynamics of regions. Although useful, a key drawback of these indices is their static nature, which limits the utility of these indices in a space–time context. This paper provides an overview of and applications of an interface called interactive visualization tool for indices of industrial diversity, which is a visual analytics tool developed specifically for the analysis and visualization of local measures of industrial composition for areal data. This overview will include a discussion of its key features, as well as a demonstration of the utility of the interface in exploring questions surrounding diversity and the dynamic nature of composition through space and time. A focus of this demonstration is to highlight how the interactivity and query functionality of this interface overcome several of the obstacles to understanding composition through space and time that prior toolkits and comparative static approaches have been unable to address.
In addition to highlighting improvements in the availability and speed of broadband as a national priority, the National Broadband Plan also includes several recommendations for improving access and use of broadband by small businesses. The plan also recommends economic development officials include broadband in their local development strategies. While these are certainly import goals, more research is needed to evaluate how broadband impacts the regional business environment, and regional capacity to retain and attract businesses in particular industries. In order to further our understanding about the linkages between broadband and businesses, and the ability of places to retain and attract businesses in particular industries, this study will develop and estimate econometric models to better understand the linkages between broadband and firms in the knowledge intensive sector. Specifically, 54 metropolitan area specific models will be developed to examine regional variations in the linkages between broadband and firms in the knowledge intensive sector in 2004. Model results highlight the importance of broadband to knowledge firms in all but five metropolitan areas across the U.S. They also reveal variations in the impact of broadband on knowledge firm presence related to metropolitan area size and industrial legacy.