1. One of the key policy changes required to unlease a flood of investment, job creation, and related benefits is for developing countries to make unlicensed spectrum actually available for commercial use, without licenses, fees, or other government approvals. WiFi uses outside of specific establishments is generally not legal, and WiMax will not be either, absent changes. Yet it is precisely free spectrum that is unleashing the WiFi boom in the US, and the potential is larger in developing countries because of the generally very high cost of access, which unlicensed spectrum (and the appropriate business models) can help bring down. The users of such spectrum will not just be ISPs and telecenters, but also companies building private ICT networks for agricultural, education, health, and financial purposes.
2. Public-private partnerships do have great potential, but the difference in time scale for decision-making between the public sector and the private sector is a major hindrance. Entrepreneurs can't wait 18 months for a decision, and many larger private companies won't either. So the right way to think of public-private partnerships may be investment/business development by the private sector, with the public sector creating opportunity by waiving unnecessary regulations, or creating social purpose exemptions for a limited time or for pilots, or otherwise lowering regulatory barriers/reducing risk for private investment--coupled with close monitoring by the public sector to ensure that genuine public benefits are being achieved. Allen L. Hammond Vice President for Innovation & Special Projects World Resources Institute 10 G Street NE Washington, DC 20002 USA V (202) 729-7777 F (202) 729-7775 [EMAIL PROTECTED] www.wri.org www.digitaldividend.org ------------ This DOT-COM Discussion is funded by the dot-ORG USAID Cooperative Agreement, and hosted by GKD. http://www.dot-com-alliance.org provides more information. To post a message, send it to: <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> To subscribe or unsubscribe, send a message to: <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>. In the 1st line of the message type: subscribe gkd OR type: unsubscribe gkd For the GKD database, with past messages: http://www.GKDknowledge.org