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Working Paper

Challenging prospects for roam like at home

In 2015 the European Union adopted new rules seeking to implement a roam like at home regime for member states. This Working Paper highlights challenges in implementing roam like at home, and it provides insights on the economics of international mobile roaming.

By: and Date: June 15, 2016 Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy

On 25 November 2015, the European Union enacted new rules for international mobile roaming (IMR) under Regulation 2015/2120, which seeks to implement a Roam Like at Home (RLAH) regime among the member states of the European Union. Questions remain, however, as to whether it is possible to implement RLAH without mandating below-cost pricing and thus introducing significant regulatory and economic distortions.

It is difficult to see how RLAH could be implemented for other than trivial amounts of IMR traffic without significant cross-subsidisation of the IMR service in many different dimensions. Identifying ways to maintain the ubiquity of the IMR service without unduly distorting the economics of European mobile markets and networks would appear to pose serious challenges; the saving grace, however, might well be that IMR revenue now represents a small enough fraction of total mobile revenue (thanks to previous regulation) that the necessary cross-subsidies might be manageable. The European Commission, which is required to assess the situation and to provide legislative proposals by 15 June 2016, faces a daunting task.

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Working Paper

How big is China’s digital economy?

The rise of influential Chinese digital giants, including Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent and Xiaomi has shown the world that China is a global leader in digital innovation and it is not surprising that China has started to influence the global digital market. But is China exploiting its full potential in this area? To answer this question, the authors assess how big China’s digital economy is relative to the rest of its economy, and how China performs compared to the rest of the world.

By: Alicia García-Herrero and Jianwei Xu Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: May 17, 2018
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Upcoming Event

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EU-LAC Economic Forum 2018

The second edition of the EU-LAC Economic Forum, a high level gathering for in-depth research-based exchanges on economic issues between European, Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) policy makers and experts.

Speakers: Sylvie Durán, Emilio Lamo de Espinosa, Alicia García-Herrero, Jorge Grunberg, Gonzalo Gutiérrez, Bert Hoffmann, Edita Hrdá, Ramón Jáuregui, Juan Jung, Carlos Malamud, J. Scott Marcus, Neven Mimica, Andrew Murray, Detlef Nolte, Guillermo Fernández de Soto, Paulo Speller, Anne Sperschneider and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Global Economics & Governance Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels
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Blog Post

How e-commerce reshapes markets and firms’ strategies

The development of e-commerce has affected both demand and supply fundamentals of markets, changing the way competition works. In the effort to develop a frictionless and welfare maximizing digital single market across the EU, it is necessary to carefully review the disruptive forces on e-commerce on markets and firms’ strategies.

By: Georgios Petropoulos Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: May 7, 2018
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External Publication

Network Sharing and 5G in Europe: The Potential Benefits of Using SDN or NFV

What technological, economic, and regulatory policy implications might flow from the use of Software Defined Networks (SDN) and Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) technologies, and what are the interactions among these different dimensions? The authors explore the application of SDN/NFV technology to achieve greater flexibility as to how communication networks are used.

By: J. Scott Marcus and Gabor Molnar Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: December 7, 2017
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Blog Post

Can roaming be saved after Brexit?

The referendum where UK voters chose to exit the European Union has many unanticipated consequences. One that is gaining visibility in the UK just now is the impact of Brexit on mobile roaming arrangements. How might the UK maintain roaming arrangements with the EU in the event of a hard Brexit?

By: J. Scott Marcus and Robert G. Clarke Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: September 21, 2017
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External Publication

Economic Implications of Further Harmonisation of Electronic Communications Regulation in the EU

One of the ways in which the European Commission has sought over the years to strengthen the European single market is by means of increased harmonisation of the regulation of electronic communications. To the extent that the European Union functions as a confederation of somewhat autonomous member states, however, there are both practical and political limits to the degree of harmonisation that is realistically desirable or achievable.

By: J. Scott Marcus and Christian Wernick Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: August 11, 2017
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Past Event

Past Event

Geo-blocking in the digital single market

Geo-blocking is a discriminatory practice that is wide-spread in EU. It prevents online customers from accessing and purchasing products or services from a website based in another member state

Speakers: Marine Elgrichi, J. Scott Marcus, Fabian Paagman, Bertin Martens, Georgios Petropoulos, Agustin Reyna, Gareth Shier, Werner Stengg and Roza von Thun Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: May 30, 2017
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Working Paper

From start-up to scale-up: examining public policies for the financing of high-growth ventures

What are the challenges of financing scale-ups, and how can long-term public policies support the creation of a better scale-up environment?

By: Gilles Duruflé, Thomas Hellmann and Karen E. Wilson Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: April 10, 2017
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Blog Post

High expectations for 5G confront practical realities

The next wave of mobile network innovation is provoking great excitement in the industry. And indeed, there is substantial potential for improvement. However, the exact form of the technology and the appropriate policy support are still far from clear. And we should beware of over-ambitious promises about the impact and uptake of new network technologies.

By: J. Scott Marcus Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: March 14, 2017
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External Publication

Extending the scope of the geo-blocking prohibition: an economic assessment

This paper was prepared for the European Parliament at the request of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection.

By: J. Scott Marcus and Georgios Petropoulos Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: February 27, 2017
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Blog Post

Big data and first-degree price discrimination

What’s at stake: first-degree price discrimination - or person-specific pricing, had until recently been considered a theoretical case with unlikely real-world application. Yet the increasing availability of big data could make this possible. We review recent contributions on this issue.

By: Silvia Merler Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: February 20, 2017
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Blog Post

How good a shield is Privacy Shield?

Privacy Shield was put in place in 2016 to ensure that transfers of personal data from the EU to the US would be in compliance with European Union privacy law, and thus permissible. The institutional framework of Privacy Shield was weak, and depended on the good will of the US administration. Recent actions by the new administration, including the famous executive order forbidding residents from 7 predominantly Muslim countries to enter the US, may have (presumably unintended) effects on Privacy Shield. To preserve the validity of Privacy Shield in European Courts, strong EU-US cooperation and potentially additional agreements may become necessary.

By: J. Scott Marcus Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: February 7, 2017
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