Research Conference on Communications, Information and Internet Policy
The annual Research Conference on Communications, Information and Internet Policy (commonly referred to as TPRC based on its historical name Telecommunications Policy Research Conference) is a multidisciplinary forum where scholars engaged in publishable research relevant to issues of national and international policy on communications, information, and the Internet present their work for audiences of fellow scholars and public- and private-sector decision makers engaged in telecommunications, media, and information policy.
Purpose and organization
The purpose of the Conference is to acquaint those active in the policy-making field with the best of recent research and to familiarize researchers with the knowledge requirements of public policymakers and the various affected industries. The conference consists of panelists who present papers selected based on abstracts, as well as discussion panels and keynote speakers; the Program Committee of TPRC is responsible for the selection of all papers and presenters.
The Conference is organized by TPRC, Inc., a non-profit organization incorporated in the State of Maryland. TPRC is governed by an international Board of Directors, consisting of individuals from the academy, industry, government, and non-profit sectors, and currently (2011–12) chaired by Johannes M. Bauer (Michigan State University). The conference program is organized by a Program Committee, currently (2011–12) chaired by Pierre de Vries (University of Washington and Silicon Flatirons Center, University of Colorado).
Topics addressed at TPRC
Contributors to TPRC present legal, economic, social, and technical work on a range of topics and subject matter areas, including but not limited to: voice, video, and data communications using wireline and wireless networks; traditional mass media including radio and television broadcasting, cable- and satellite-delivered communication; the growth and evolution of the Internet ecosystem; technological convergence and its implications for statutes, regulations, and treaties; intellectual property; electronic commerce; privacy and cybersecurity; and the role of communications, information, and the Internet in economic development.
Publication and archiving of papers
Beginning with the 2008 conference, TPRC papers are archived in the Social Sciences Research Network (SSRN). Selected papers are published in special issues of Telecommunications Policy and The Journal of Information Policy.
Timeline for paper submission and selection
A call for papers is typically circulated in January of each year. Abstracts are due by the end March and authors chosen to present are notified in June. To encourage participation by young and emerging scholars, TPRC also holds an international student paper competition with cash and in-kind prizes for the top three papers as selected by the Program Committee. This competition is based on full papers, typically due at the end of April.
TPRC 2012 (40th Anniversary)
Board of Directors (2011-2012)
- Johannes M. Bauer, TPRC Chair, Michigan State University
- Jonathan D. Aronson, USC Annenberg School of Communication & Journalism
- Jonathan Banks, US Telecom Association
- David D. Clark, MIT, Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lag (CSAIL)
- Susan P. Crawford, Harvard Law School
- Pierre de Vries, University of Washington and University of Colorado at Boulder
- Martha A Garcia-Murillo, Syracuse University
- Thomas W. Hazlett, George Mason University
- C. Link Hoewing, TPRC Vice Chair, Verizon
- John Horrigan, TechNet
- Robert M. Pepper, Cisco
- Gregory Rosston, Stanford University
- Douglas Sicker, University of Colorado at Boulder
- James B. Speta, TPRC Secretary, Northwestern University Law School
- Gigi B. Sohn, TPRC Treasurer, Public Knowledge
- Nicol Turner-Lee, National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC)
- Joe Waz, Altura West, LLC
- William Webb, Neul
- Richard S. Whitt, Google
Program Committee Chairs (2003-2012)
- 2011 and 2012 Pierre deVries, University of Washington and University of Colorado at Boulder
- 2010 James B. Speta, Northwestern University Law School
- 2009 Douglas Sicker, University of Colorado at Boulder
- 2008 L Jean Camp, Indiana University
- 2006 and 2007 Martha A Garcia-Murillo, Syracuse University
- 2005 John Horrigan, Pew Internet & American Life Project
- 2003 amd 2004 Robert Cannon, FCC
TPRC was founded in 1972 by a group of regulators, governmental researchers and representatives of diverse academic communities who met at the first Telecommunications Policy Research Conference (subsequently renamed TPRC) organized by the Office of Telecommunications Policy in the White House. As communications policy has grown in importance to where the very term “telecommunications” is inadequate, the conference has evolved and expanded. TPRC saw the birth of the discourse on spectrum auctions. TPRC offered the first panel on the social and political implications of e-commerce in 1994. Conference topics have increasingly emphasized the interaction among disciplines, including network science and engineering, economics, law, and social sciences.
See, "From A Novel Conference: The Origin of TPRC", by Bruce M. Owen from the book: TELEPHONY, THE INTERNET, AND THE MEDIA Selected Papers from the 1997 Telecommunications Policy Research Conference. Edited by Jeffrey K. MacKie-Mason, University of Michigan and David Waterman, Indiana University.