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2013 | 8 | 160--177
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Composite Evaluation of Broadband Internet Access in Poland

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The level of access to Internet is constantly evaluated and promoted by electronic communications regulators around the world. The issue is especially important in countries, such as Poland, where where Internet access is highly heterogenous among local markets. The objective of this paper is to identify socio-economic factors that influence the level of Internet access in local communities (gminas) in Poland. The definition of Internet access involves multiple criteria and encompasses in particular its availability, adoption, speed, quality of service and price. In the paper we propose a two-phase approach to a comparison of Internet access in various gminas. First we use Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to evaluate Internet broadband access depending on their demographic characteristics based on data from 2010 and 2011 collected by Poland's Office of Electronic Communications (UKE). In the second stage we explain the obtained DEA effectiveness indices using supervised learning techniques with the socio-economic status of the community as explanatory variables. We show that in the period under study rural communities experienced greater Internet access improvement than urban communities, therefore catching up with large cities and reducing technological gap. Moreover, we identify drivers of broadband Internet advancement, including: community type, community education and age structure, computerization level in schools and Herfindahl-Hirschman competition index. We show that an effective regulation may foster the advancement of fixed-location broadband Internet access. (original abstract)
Opis fizyczny
  • Warsaw School of Economics, Poland
  • Warsaw School of Economics, Poland
  • Warsaw School of Economics, Poland
  • Urząd Komunikacji Elektronicznej
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