Growth in the information and communication technology (ICT) sector has exploded over the past 20 years. Continuous dynamic market and technology developments in this sector have led to a phenomenon known as convergence, which is defined in this volume as the erosion of boundaries between previously separate ICT services, networks, and business practices. Some examples include cable television networks that offer phone service, Internet television, and mergers between media and telecommunications firms. The results are exciting and hold significant promise for developing countries, which can benefit from expanded access, greater competition, and increased investments. However, convergence in ICT is challenging traditional policy and regulatory frameworks. With convergence occurring in countries across the spectrum of economic development, it is critical that policy makers and regulators understand and respond in ways that maximise the benefits while mitigating the risks. This volume analyses the strategic and regulatory dimensions of convergence. It offers policy makers and regulators examples from countries around the world as they address this phenomenon.The authors suggest that countries that enable convergence are likely to reap the greater rewards, but the precise nature of the response will vary by country. Hence, this book offers global principles that should be tailored to local circumstances as regulatory frameworks evolve to address convergence.
Convergence in Information and Communication Technology
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