A Comparative Diffusion Analysis of the Fixed Line, Mobile and Internet Services in Pakistan
This research aims at creating a detailed account on the diffusion of telecommunications services in a complex socio-economic context, taking Pakistan as a case study. The core research question of this thesis is to investigate why the successful experience of the rapid and an effective diffusion of mobile communications services in case of Pakistan couldn’t be replicated in the cases of fixed telephony and internet services. The book investigates those major attributes which play a significant role in the diffusion of telecommunications services in a complex socio-economic and political context. Hence, the study reveals 47 major attributes (indicators) that fully explain why some telecom services successfully diffuse in the market; whereas the others fail to produce similar results. The thesis also conducts a detailed impact analysis of the diffused telecommunications services within the local context. In addition to that, the current research comes up with a list of strategic and policy recommendations for the relevant market players and authorities. Hence, this work presumably makes a significant contribution to an ongoing diffusion research, particularly in context of the diffusion of telecom services within a complex unit of adoption. The empirical part of the research includes a significantly high number of interviews that were conducted from the key players of the local telecom market, and they essentially represented all the five major domains i.e. the supplier, policy, regulatory, user, and supporting domains. There were several workshops organized primarily in different universities across the country in order to collect a substantial amount of users’ responses, using a well-structured questionnaire. The research makes an effective use of the detailed observations and extensive amount of readings of the published research and media reports in order to fully understand the real dynamics and complexities involved in the diffusion process. The use of mixed-methodology i.e. the careful application of both the quantitative and qualitative research methods further strengthens the reliability of the collected data and validity of the investigated facts. It is assumed here that the validity of the derived results would be extendable to those cases that would have some degree of contextual resemblance with the presented case. Hence, the current study is likely to bring a fresh slant of perspective on the diffusion research in order to help other diffusion scholars in designing an analytical framework to conduct similar sort of studies on the other cases that would have similarities with the specific case that this thesis deals with. However, it is further assumed that most of the underdeveloped countries, as well as some of the developing nations would have a certain degree of social, economic, institutional, legal, historical and political resemblance with the presented case. Therefore the current research is believed to be highly beneficial and insightful for the telecom policy makers, regulators and suppliers in developing and aligning their tailored policies, regulations and strategies for the successful diffusion and sustainable growth of telecom services within any ‘unit of adoption’; whether it is a private firm, social organization, public institution, a targeted market or a specific segment of the society.