Articles by Dr. Thomas Hazlett

This page contains all the articles authored and co-authored by Dr. Hazlett during his tenure of the director of the IEP. Dr. Hazlett has published on a wide gamut of issues within the field of telecommunications policy, including radio spectrum allocation, intellectual property rights and antitrust regulations.

Dr. Hazlett Research

FCC and the Internet: In Search of Bandwidth

FCC and the Internet: In Search of Bandwidth

Regulators are trying to create a more flexible, competitive model for allocation of bandwidth for mobile data. By THOMAS W. HAZLETT July 8, 2017 12:34 a.m. ET The Radio Act of 1927, the brainchild of then-Secretary of Commerce Herbert C. Hoover, created a regulatory regime for carefully parceling o[...]
Thank Goodness Apple's iPhone Violated 'Net Neutrality' in 2007

Thank Goodness Apple's iPhone Violated 'Net Neutrality' in 2007

      By Thomas Hazlett June 29, 2017 Ten years ago this week the Apple iPhone, described by Steve Jobs as a “revolutionary product” that “changes everything,” went on sale for the first time. A million flew off the shelves in just ten weeks and a decade later—with more than a billion sold worldwide—the iPhone has tr[...]
A Short History of Radio Explains the iPhone’s Success

A Short History of Radio Explains the iPhone’s Success

    Thomas Winslow Hazlett JUNE 29, 2017 The iPhone roared into the marketplace 10 years ago today, and overwhelmed the wireless world. The smartphone’s iconic social significance has been duly noted. What has escaped attention is that the device burst into a sector long insulated from the slightest threat of dis[...]
FCC “Incentive Auction” marks progress and pitfalls towards freeing wireless spectrum

FCC “Incentive Auction” marks progress and pitfalls towards freeing wireless spectrum

          Thomas W. Hazlett Wednesday, May 24, 2017 In February 2009 the Federal Communications Commission began to draft a National Broadband Plan (NBP). Published in March 2010, the study asked how policymakers might improve broadband in the U.S. The answer: use innovative market mechanisms to [...]
United Airlines' 'Re-Accommodation' Could Have So Easily Been Avoided

United Airlines' 'Re-Accommodation' Could Have So Easily Been Avoided

      By Thomas Hazlett May 23, 2017 United’s passenger “re-accommodation” debacle was so easy to avoid. An auction would discover which passengers would be eager to step aside.  United did dangle $800 in flight credits for seats, but that price was wrong. Bidding was curiously halted.  And then United decided to acq[...]
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From FM to the Smartphone: The Evolution of Radio Media

May 10, 2017 in Radio, Technology Thomas Hazlett— The Age of Wireless has triggered excitement, disruption, and challenge. Debates rage on about the value of social media, how to deal with the threat of cyber hacking, and the regulation of emerging networks. But beneath it all lies a hardened policy structure that doles out radio spectrum [...]
Valuing Spectrum Allocations

Valuing Spectrum Allocations

Thomas W. Hazlett, Clemson University Michael Honig, Northwestern University Abstract Observing trends in which Wi-Fi and Bluetooth have become widely popular, some argue that unlicensed allocations hosting such wireless technologies are increasingly valuable and that administrative spectrum allocations should shift accordingly. We challenge t[...]
Herbert Hoover's Radio Malware Turns 90

Herbert Hoover's Radio Malware Turns 90

Herbert Hoover's Radio Malware Turns 90 The Radio Act of 1927 has enjoyed a nice, long life. It's past time for a retirement party. Thomas Winslow Hazlett | February 24, 2017 On February 23, 1927, Babe Ruth had still to hit 60 home runs in a season. Yet President Calvin Coolidge would that day sign a bill that would establish how radio spe[...]
Herbert Hoover's Radio Malware Turns 90

Herbert Hoover's Radio Malware Turns 90

The Radio Act of 1927 has enjoyed a nice, long life. It's past time for a retirement party. Thomas W. Hazlett | February 24, 2017 On February 23, 1927, Babe Ruth had still to hit 60 home runs in a season. Yet President Calvin Coolidge would that day sign a bill that would establish how radio spectrum—the "economic oxygen" of the emerging in[...]
Understanding the Disruptive Innovation Wrought by Computers and the Internet: A Review

Understanding the Disruptive Innovation Wrought by Computers and the Internet: A Review

Thomas Hazlett recently reviewed two new volumes on the Information Economy for the International Journal of Economics of Business.  Both Martin Campbell-Kelly and Daniel D. Garcia-Swartz, From mainframes to smartphones: A history of the international computer industry (Harvard University Press, 2015), and Shane Greenstein, How the Internet became [...]
Obama's misguided plan to connect schools to the Internet

Obama's misguided plan to connect schools to the Internet

My new research shows that more Internet access funding doesn't help students. And almost all U.S. schools are already online. By Thomas Hazlett 08/23/16 09:27 AM EDT Even during times of political gridlock, connecting schools to the Internet has always received bipartisan support. Politicians ranging from Bill Clinton to Newt Gingrich h[...]
Time for the Supremes to Decide 'Net Neutrality'

Time for the Supremes to Decide 'Net Neutrality'

Time for the Supremes to Decide 'Net Neutrality' By Thomas Hazlett & Joshua Wright The FCC's dramatic 2015 pivot on Internet regulation sought to envelope advanced broadband networks in the shroud of telephone company rules rolled out in the Mann Elkins Act of 1910. These historic common carriage "Title II" regulations - originally the pr[...]
The Hill: Patients dying because of FDA inflexibility

The Hill: Patients dying because of FDA inflexibility

Patients dying because of FDA inflexibility By Thomas W. Hazlett - 05/25/16 05:08 PM EDT via The Hill   On May 26, the Food and Drug Administration will decide whether to approve eteplirsen, a therapy for Duchenne multiple dystrophy (DMD), on a fast-track basis. The drug, made by Sarepta Therapeutics, is the first for this br[...]
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Speed kills, but spectrum bureaucracy failed to apply the brakes

June 12, 2015 By Harold Feld and Thomas W. Hazlett The tragic derailment of Amtrak Northeast Regional train #188, killing at least eight passengers in May,would likely have been prevented by a technology mandated by a 2008 law. Alas, the safety system, called Positive Train Control (PTC), has faced delays. Amtrak has tried to shift the blame to[...]
Hazlett in TIME: How to Neuter the Net Revolution

Hazlett in TIME: How to Neuter the Net Revolution

The Internet can't innovate living under the rules of a 1970s telephone company. “The Internet revolution has ended just as surprisingly as it began,” writes Professor Lawrence Lessig. “None expected the explosion of creativity that the network produced; few expected that explosion to collapse as quickly and profoundly as it has.”  This dirge ca[...]
Hazlett on The Rationality of U.S. Regulation of the Broadcast Spectrum in the 1934 Communications Act

Hazlett on The Rationality of U.S. Regulation of the Broadcast Spectrum in the 1934 Communications Act

On the 80th anniversary of the Communications Act, the November 2014 issue of The Review of Industrial Organization looks back at the landmark legislation and ahead to the future of broadcast regulation. The journal features an article by Thomas W. Hazlett, "The Rationality of U.S. Regulation of the Broadcast Spectrum in the 1934 Communications Act[...]
Hazlett and Wright Pen Wall Street Journal Op-Ed on FCC Over-Management of the Internet

Hazlett and Wright Pen Wall Street Journal Op-Ed on FCC Over-Management of the Internet

Joshua Wright, IEP Scholar on leave and current FTC Commissioner, joined Thomas Hazlett to write an Op-Ed in the Wall Street Journal titled "Micromanaging the Web Would Be a Macro Mistake." The Op-Ed warns of the issues that arise when the FCC attempts to over manage internet regulations, such as net neutrality. In an attempt to prevent anti-compet[...]
Micromanaging the Web Would Be a Macro Mistake

Micromanaging the Web Would Be a Macro Mistake

The FCC doesn't seem to realize that antitrust law is enough to ensure fairness. By THOMAS W. HAZLETT And JOSHUA D. WRIGHT July 13, 2014 The cry for Internet regulation is familiar. "Net neutrality" rules are the most recent episode in a recurring story in which proponents seek to limit competition while claiming that nothing less [...]
Hazlett, Oh, and Skorup on the Effects of Prohibiting Handset Bundling in Finland and Belgium

Hazlett, Oh, and Skorup on the Effects of Prohibiting Handset Bundling in Finland and Belgium

Thomas Hazlett joined IEP Scholars Sarah Oh and Brent Skorup in authoring a paper studying the effects of laws passed in Finland and Belgium prohibiting the bundling of cell phones with 3G wireless broadband plans. The paper compares 3G subscribership rates in these countries with other European countries that did not place such a ban on bundling. [...]
Hazlett and Wallsten write Op-Ed on USF in The Hill

Hazlett and Wallsten write Op-Ed on USF in The Hill

Thomas Hazlett and Scott Wallsten, senior fellow at the Technology Policy Institute, wrote an op-ed published on TheHill.com. The piece, entitled "Taking From the poor and giving to the ConnectED," criticizes the FCC's high cost and low reward spending on the Universal Service Fund. $30 billion dollars have been spent on the E-Rate program (now Con[...]
Hazlett and Skorup on LightSquared and Spectrum Rights

Hazlett and Skorup on LightSquared and Spectrum Rights

IEP's Thomas Hazlett and Brent Skorup recently completed a new research piece, Tragedy of the Regulatory Commons: LightSquared and the Missing Spectrum Rights. The Duke Law & Technology Review will publish the article later this year. Hazlett and Skorup describe how the FCC's rights assignment process caused the GPS-LightSquared conflict, resulting[...]
Regulating Broadband Networks:  Assessing the Global Data for Evidence-Based Policy

Regulating Broadband Networks: Assessing the Global Data for Evidence-Based Policy

Bronwyn Howell, Economist, New Zealand Institute for the Study of Competition and Regulation An examination of the historical context suggests that comparative analysis of the development of the New Zealand and United States industries over the past thirty years, and the more recent experiences of the past thirteen years as New Zealand has pursu[...]
Exactitude in Defining Rights: Radio Spectrum and the 'Harmful Interference' Conundrum

Exactitude in Defining Rights: Radio Spectrum and the 'Harmful Interference' Conundrum

Berkeley Technology Law Journal Vol. 28, 2013, George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 12-55.  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Sarah Oh, Research Fellow, Information Economy Project, and Ph.D. Student, George Mason University Department of Economics. In the century since the R[...]
Walled Garden Rivalry: The Creation of Mobile Network Ecosystems

Walled Garden Rivalry: The Creation of Mobile Network Ecosystems

George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 11-50.  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, David Teece, Thomas W. Tusher Professor in Global Business, UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, Leonard Waverman, Dean of the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary. Dynamic comp[...]
What Really Matters in Spectrum Allocation Design

What Really Matters in Spectrum Allocation Design

10 Nw. J. Tech. & Intell. Prop. 93 (2012). Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Roberto E. Muñoz, Senior Fellow, Information Economy Project and Professor, Federico, Santa María Technical University, Santiago, Chile, Diego Avanzini, Visiting Scholar, Information Economy Project. [...]
Policy-Induced Competition: The Case of Cable TV Set-Top Boxes

Policy-Induced Competition: The Case of Cable TV Set-Top Boxes

12 Minn. J.L. Sci. & Tech. 279 (2011).  Ralitza A. Grigorova-Minchev, Vice President, Arlington Economics, Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. "...This failure is, in less glossy reports, the assessment of the FCC itself. In the Commission’s words, the CableCARD technology developed to fa[...]
The Federal Communication Commission's Excellent Mobile Competition Adventure

The Federal Communication Commission's Excellent Mobile Competition Adventure

Mercatus Center Working Paper No. 11-46.  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law Stressed-out undergrads meet deadlines for term papers by cramming facts, figures, and buzzwords; splicing Wikipedia entries; pasting select expert quotations; citing everything twice; inserting some nifty, multi-col[...]
Market Power in U.S. Broadband Services

Market Power in U.S. Broadband Services

38 Review of Industrial Organization (March, 2011), 151-71.  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Dennis L. Weisman, Department of Economics, Kansas State University. The U.S. telecommunications industry has come under scrutiny amid concerns that regulatory policies have been too permissive. T[...]
Modular Confines of Mobile Networks: Are iPhones iPhony?

Modular Confines of Mobile Networks: Are iPhones iPhony?

19 Supreme Ct. Econ. Rev. 67-102 (2011).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. Strategic investments by wireless carriers and others are generating rapid development of the “mobile ecology,” increasing modularity even while embracing and extending vertical controls. Coordination among compleme[...]
Tragedy T.V.: Rights Fragmentation and the Junk Band Problem

Tragedy T.V.: Rights Fragmentation and the Junk Band Problem

53 Ariz. L. Rev. 83 (2011).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Director, Information Economy Project, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law Tragedy of the anticommons occurs when property rules fail to enable efficient social coordination. In radio spectrum, rights issued to airwave users have traditionally been severely[...]
The Overly Active Corpse of Red Lion

The Overly Active Corpse of Red Lion

9 Northwestern J. Tech. & IP 51-95 (2010).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Sarah Oh, Operations and Research Director, Information Economy Project, Drew Clark, Executive Director, Partnership for a Connected Illinois, Inc., Chairman and Publisher, Broadband Census LLC. The Northwes[...]
Radio Spectrum and the Disruptive Clarity of Ronald Coase

Radio Spectrum and the Disruptive Clarity of Ronald Coase

Coase Conference: Markets, Firms and Property Rights: A Celebration of the Research of Ronald Coase, University of Chicago Law School. Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, David Porter, Donna and David Janes Endowed Chair in Experimental Economics, Chapman University, Vernon L. Smith, Profe[...]
A Welfare Analysis of Spectrum Allocation Policies

A Welfare Analysis of Spectrum Allocation Policies

40 RAND Journal of Economics 424–54, Autumn 2009.  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Roberto E. Muñoz, Senior Fellow, Information Economy Project and Professor, Federico Santa María Technical University, Santiago, Chile. Economic analysis of spectrum policy focuses on government revenues de[...]
Spectrum Allocation in Latin America: An Economic Analysis

Spectrum Allocation in Latin America: An Economic Analysis

21 Information Economics & Policy 261-78 (2009). Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Roberto E. Muñoz, Senior Fellow, Information Economy Project and Professor, Federico Santa María Technical University, Santiago, Chile. As elsewhere, wireless markets play a crucial role in Latin Americ[...]
Optimal Abolition of FCC Spectrum Allocation

Optimal Abolition of FCC Spectrum Allocation

22 Journal of Economic Perspectives 103-28 (Winter 2008).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. Ronald Coase based his 1959 call for spectrum markets on theoretical conjecture. Today abundant evidence supports his case. Targeted liberalization in cellular markets, as contrasted with regulatory[...]
Can Wireless Infrastructure Keep Up In Ultra Broadband? Gigabits vs. Megahertz

Can Wireless Infrastructure Keep Up In Ultra Broadband? Gigabits vs. Megahertz

Presentation, CITI 25th Anniversary International Summit on Media & Communication 2008.  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. Overview: (1) Yes, It will take Liberal Licenses; broad, exclusive spectrum rights productive; more bandwidth; overlays for reallocations; mobile voice now dominati[...]
Antitrust in Orbit: Some Dynamics of Horizontal Merger Analysis in General and with Respect to XM-Sirius

Antitrust in Orbit: Some Dynamics of Horizontal Merger Analysis in General and with Respect to XM-Sirius

Journal of Competition Law & Economics, 4(3), 753–773 (Sept. 2008). Thomas W. Hazlett, Director, Information Economy Project and Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. "Horizontal merger evaluation is heavily reliant on market definition. An SSNIP framework formats the analysis, and demand elasticity evidence [...]
Property Rights and Wireless License Values

Property Rights and Wireless License Values

51 Journal of Law & Economics 563-98 (August 2008).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. While extending the scope of spectrum property rights promotes efficiency, such reforms are often deterred by equity concerns. Theoretically, however, the windfalls may be negative. Relaxing license r[...]
Part 4 - A Rejoinder to Weiser and Hatfield on Spectrum Rights

Part 4 - A Rejoinder to Weiser and Hatfield on Spectrum Rights

15 George Mason Law Review 1031-39 (June 2008).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. "The current spectrum regulatory system generates an enormous volume of verbiage but precious little analysis. This makes the probing and provocative discussion initiated by Professors Phil Weiser and Dale Ha[...]
Natural Experiments in U.S. Broadband Regulation

Natural Experiments in U.S. Broadband Regulation

7 Review of Network Economics 13–33 (Issue 4, December 2008).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Anil Caliskan, Research Economist. Regulations governing broadband networks are being considered. Natural experiments conducted with respect to "open access" rules yield probative marketplace ev[...]
Empirical Evidence on the Effect of Broadband Regulation

Empirical Evidence on the Effect of Broadband Regulation

Lessons from the Telecom Wars (Mini-Conference September 28, 2006). Thomas W. Hazlett, Director, Information Economy Project and Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. Net Neutrality: Market Evidence.  Assessing the horribles; Business models developed via unregulated transactions; Unregulated transactions now[...]
The Spectrum-Allocation Debate: An Analysis

The Spectrum-Allocation Debate: An Analysis

IEEE Internet Computing September/October 2006 (vol. 10 no. 5).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. The standard approach to radio-spectrum allocation in the US posits three alternative models from which regulators choose (on a case-by-case basis) to impose basic rules for coordinating wir[...]
Shedding Tiers for a la Carte? An Economic Analysis of Cable TV Pricing

Shedding Tiers for a la Carte? An Economic Analysis of Cable TV Pricing

5 Journal of Telecommunications and High Technology Law 253-303 (2006).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. A new regulatory debate has sprung up around the pricing of TV networks on cable and satellite systems. Many argue that bundling networks on tiers, rather than selling channels individ[...]
Rivalrous Telecommunications Networks With and Without Mandatory Sharing

Rivalrous Telecommunications Networks With and Without Mandatory Sharing

58 Federal Communications Law Journal 477-510 (2006).  Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law. The 1996 Telecommunications Act (“1996 Act”), passed with bipartisan support, aimed to overturn the existing regime of regulated monopoly. Competition would be introduced, and regulation would fade away[...]
Advanced Wireless Technologies and Public Policy

Advanced Wireless Technologies and Public Policy

79 Southern California Law Review 595-665 (2006). Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Matthew L. Spitzer, Robert C. Packard Trustee Chair in Law and Professor of Political Science, University of Southern California Law School. This Article examines tradeoffs in allocating spectrum for exclusi[...]
The Social Value of TV Band Spectrum in European Countries

The Social Value of TV Band Spectrum in European Countries

8 INFO: The journal of policy, regulation and strategy for telecommunications, information and media 62-73 (2006). Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University School of Law, Jüergen Müller, Professor of Economics at Berlin School of Economics, Berlin, Germany, Roberto E. Muñoz, Senior Fellow, Information Economy Pro[...]