A Broadband Stimulus Discussion and a ‘Big Ideas’ Lecture by Internet Pioneer David Clark

by on January 29, 2009 · 10 comments

The next several days feature a variety of upcoming events, both on broadband stimulus legislation, and on some of the broader issues associated with the Internet and its architecture.

On Friday, January 30, the Technology Policy Institute features a debate, “Broadband, Economic Growth, and the Financial Crisis: Informing the Stimulus Package,”  from 12 noon – 2 p.m., at the Rayburn House Office Building, Room B369.

Moderated by my friend Scott Wallsten, senior fellow and vice president for research at the Technology Policy Institute, the event features James Assey, Executive Vice President for the National Cable & Telecommunications Association; Robert Crandall, Senior Fellow in Economic Studies, The Brookings Institution; Chris King, Principal/Senior Telecom Services Analyst, Stifel Nicolaus Telecom Equity Research; and Shane Greenstein, Elinor and Wendell Hobbs Professor of Management and Strategy at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University.

The language promoting the event notes, “How best to include broadband in an economic stimulus package depends, in part, on understanding two critical issues: how broadband affects economic growth, and how the credit crisis has affected broadband investment.  In particular, one might favor aggressive government intervention if broadband stimulates growth and investment is now lagging.  Alternatively, money might be better spent elsewhere if the effects on growth are smaller than commonly believed or private investment is continuing despite the crisis.”

And then, on Tuesday,  MIT Professor David Clark, one of the pioneers of the Internet and a distinguished scientist whose work on “end-to-end” connectivity is widely cited as the architectural blueprint of the Internet, looks to the future.  Focusing on the dynamics of advanced communications – the role of social networking, problems security and broadband access, and the industrial implications of network virtualization and overlays – Clark here tackles new forces shifting regulation and market structure.

David Clark is Senior Research Scientist at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. In the forefront of Internet development since the early 1970s, Dr. Clark was Chief Protocol Architect in 1981-1989, and then chaired the Internet Activities Board. A past chairman of the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board of the National Academies, Dr. Clark is co-director of the MIT Communications Futures Program.

I’m no longer affiliated with the Information Economy Project at George Mason University, but I urge all interested in the architecture of the Internet to register and attend More information about the lecture, and about the Information Economy Project, is available at http://iep.gmu.edu/davidclark.

It will take place at the George Mason University School of Law, Room 120, 3301 Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22201 (Orange Line: Virginia Square-GMU Metro), on Tuesday, February 3, from 4 – 5:30 p.m., with a reception to follow. The event is free and open to the public, but reservations are requested. To reserve a spot, please e-mail iep.gmu@gmail.com

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