Using ICT research to assist policy making and regulation: the case of Namibia

By Christoph Stork, Tony Vetter on July 11, 2011

This paper was presented at the fourth conference of Communications Policy Research South (CPRsouth4). The authors examine three barriers to effective telecommunications policy-making and regulation in developing countries: (i) inefficient operators; (2) information asymmetry between regulator and operators; and (3) where the role of the regulator to balance the interests of consumers, competing enterprises and investors is not being fulfilled.

The paper demonstrates how ICT research of Research ICT Africa, in combination with multiple communication strategies, has been used to assist regulators and policy-makers in making informed decisions and led to market liberalization and legislative and regulatory reform in Namibia. A presentation on research results to the Namibian president and Cabinet in 2006; private sector co-funding of research projects; over 80 newspaper articles covering research results; 21 magazine articles; six target policy briefs; radio and television interviews; and face-to-face consultations all helped in shaping public opinion and informing policy-makers and regulators. This paper describes how ICT research was translated into useful information and advice for policy-makers and regulators by working with journalists, providing strategic information to the private sector, researching issues for the regulator and maintaining impartiality.

Report details

Technology and Innovation
CPRsouth/LIRNEAsia, 2011