The Emerging World of Broadband Public–Private Partnerships: A Business Strategy and Legal Guide
The Emerging World of Broadband Public–Private Partnerships:
A Business Strategy and Legal Guide
This report explores three business models for broadband public–private partnerships:
- Private investment, public facilitation – The model focuses not on a public sector investment, but on modest measures the public sector can take to enable or encourage greater private sector investment. Google Fiber is the most prominent example, but there is significant interest among smaller companies
- Private execution, public funding – This model, which involves a substantial amount of public investment, is a variation on the traditional municipal ownership model for broadband infrastructure—but with private rather than public sector execution.
- Shared investment and risk – In this model, localities and private partners find creative ways to share the capital, operating, and maintenance costs of a broadband network.
As localities evaluate broadband public–private partnerships, they should consider both the opportunities and potential pitfalls, and pay particular attention to three interwoven issues: risk, benefit, and control. These factors are the key considerations not only for state and local governments, but also for private sector network operators and service providers. A successful partnership must align each side’s needs, and will inevitably involve trade-offs within this framework.
The report also examines, with a public sector audience in mind, the major legal issues that may arise in a broadband public–private partnership project, from early planning through the negotiating stage.
This report was written by Joanne Hovis and Marc Schulhof, Jim Baller and Ashley Stelfox and published by the Benton Foundation.
And check out these checklists:
- Key Strategy Considerations for Building a Broadband Public–Private Partnership
- Key Legal Considerations for Localities Looking to Build a Broadband Public–Private Partnership
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