Telecommunications and Rural Development: A Study of Private and Public Sector Innovation

By Jurgen Schmandt; Frederick Williams et al. | Go to book overview

6
Conclusions
Richard Cutler and Harmeet S. SawhneyThis study of the uses of telecommunications systems in rural areas was prompted by two factors: first, the recognition that rural regions of the country are suffering economic duress, and, second, the widely held expectation that the newest generation of telecommunications technology and its role in an information economy may provide new opportunities for ameliorating some of the difficulties facing sparsely populated and remote parts of the country. The potential of telecommunications has been realized in many communities, and this study has attempted to describe and analyze a number of them. Many discussions of telecommunications speculate on larger issues such as the information age, structural change, or social equity; our approach directed attention to the micro level--where the impact of rural telecommunications is first felt. Studying the innovations made by the site communities has provided insights into important areas of policy considerations, namely the benefits of telecommunications investments, the mechanics of implementing an infrastructure strategy, and the relationship between economic and community development and telecommunications strategies.Our study was framed by the following research questions:
1. What innovative applications of telecommunications for rural development can be identified in the United States at this time?

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Telecommunications and Rural Development: A Study of Private and Public Sector Innovation
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Tables and Figures vii
  • Preface ix
  • 1: Introduction 1
  • Notes 15
  • 2: Doing Business in Rural America 18
  • Introduction 18
  • CONCLUSIONS 51
  • Notes 56
  • 3: Public-Service Delivery 61
  • Introduction 61
  • CONCLUSIONS 90
  • Notes 92
  • 4: Small Rural Telephone Companies, Cooperatives, and Regional Alliances 95
  • Introduction 95
  • Notes 163
  • 5: Telecommunications and Community Development 172
  • Introduction 172
  • CONCLUSIONS 208
  • Appendix 5.1 Extended Area Service in Hutto, Texas 212
  • Appendix 5.2 U.S. Department of Agriculture 214
  • Appendix 5.2 U.S. Department of Agriculture 216
  • 6: Conclusions 222
  • Notes 238
  • Telecommunications Glossary 241
  • Selected Bibliography 253
  • Index 255
  • ABOUT THE EDITORS 262
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