Purpose – This paper aims to give conclusions from the papers in the special issue about “Re‐thinking universal service in the digital era”. Design/methodology/approach – A summary of the themes, trends and new concepts about universal service is compiled from the varied viewpoints introduced in the issue. The editors also appraise the mobile and broadband universal service candidates under the different perspectives in the issue, point out a number of questionable assumptions and gaps in the universal service stories, and touch on the international currents of influence in universal service policy. Finally, a succinct vision of a universal service policy for Europe is outlined. Findings – This special issue aims to provide support to the policy process with regard to universal service in a digital context. The papers in the issue highlight developments that are shaking up the current universal service model. They consider universal service from a set of different dimensions, encompassing both demand and supply side considerations. Also a comparative outlook draws lessons from a representative set of existing regulatory models. Originality/value – The paper provides a summary of the main avenues for the upcoming universal service policy debate.
info – Emerald Publishing
Published: Aug 15, 2008
Keywords: Broadband networks; Mobile communication systems; Digital communication systems
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