Document Type


Publication Date



With a new focus for federal universal service programs on broadband and the NTIA BTOP funding for broadband adoption projects, recent years have been “exciting times” for those interested in broadband policy aimed at stimulating adoption. While most of the recent programs are still too new to be evaluated rigorously, lessons from older academic study can inform our expectations and lend guidance toward evaluating program success. In this brief work, I review what we know from the last decade and a half of literature on the impact of regulation on broadband adoption, discuss the (mostly woeful) attempts at evaluating adoption stimulus plans in the past, and take a quick look at evaluations of the most recent federal stimulus efforts.