The Economics of Non-Neutrality on the Internet, Cooperation, and Competition

Time: Monday, June 12, 2017 - 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Type: Seminar Series
Presenter: Prof. Saswati Sarkar, University of Pennsylvania
Room/Office: Room 335
17 Hillhouse Avenue
New Haven, CT 06511
United States

Department of Electrical Engineering Seminar 

"The Economics of Non-Neutrality on the Internet, Cooperation, and Competition"

Professor Saswati Sarkar
University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

Net-neutrality on the Internet is the set of policies that prevents a paid or unpaid discrimination by ISPs among different types of transmitted data. In this talk, first, we consider economic frameworks to investigate different questions about the departure toward a non-neutral regime and its possible consequences. In particular, we i) assess whether different entities of the market have the incentive to adopt a non-neutral pricing scheme; and if yes ii) what are the pricing strategies they choose; and iii) how these changes affect the Internet market, and iv) whether different entities can simultaneously collaborate and compete among each other. In this context, first, we investigate the incentives of different entities of the Internet market for migrating to a non-neutral regime. Thus, we consider early stages of a non-neutral Internet. We consider a diverse set of parameters for the market, e.g. market powers of ISPs, sensitivity of EUs and CPs to the quality of the content. The goal is to obtain founded insights on whether there exists a market equilibrium, the structure of the equilibria, and how they depend on different parameters of the market when the current equilibrium (neutral regime) is disrupted and some ISPs have switched to a non-neutral regime. Then, we seek to investigate frameworks using which ISPs and CPs select appropriate incentives for each other, and investigate the implications of these new schemes on the entities of the Internet market. Finally, we discuss strategic cooperation between service providers in sharing resources both need, to increase the revenue. We investigate the effects of this cooperation on the competition among them and the interplay between the cooperation and competition.

Bio: Saswati Sarkar received her Master of Engineering degree from the Electrical Communication Engineering Department at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore in1996 and the Ph.D. degree from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Maryland, College Park, in 2000. She joined the Electrical and Systems Engineering Department at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, as an Assistant Professor in 2000 where she is currently a Professor. She received the Motorola gold medal for the best masters’ student in the division of electrical sciences at the Indian Institute of Science and a National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Award in 2003. She was an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications from 2001 to 2006, and of the IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networks from 2008 to 2013. Her research interests are in stochastic control, resource allocation, dynamic games, and economics of networks.

Monday, June 12, 2017
2:00 PM
17 Hillhouse Ave, Room 335