The influence of standardisation and regulation on the development of intelligent networks

Shepherd, John William (2004). The influence of standardisation and regulation on the development of intelligent networks. PhD thesis The Open University.



In today’s global economy a flexible and responsive telecommunications infrastructure is essential to the maintenance and development of a country’s economy. Within a free market, such an infrastructure depends upon the use of common standards; either imposed as a consequence of regulation or evolved through the operation of the market. This thesis investigates the influence of regulation and standardisation on Intelligent Network telecommunications technology by addressing the hypothesis:

Tight architecture-based regulation is inappropriate for a rapidly changing telecommunications environment, since that environment is continually challenging and redefining the boundaries of technological change.

The multi-method approach adopted is based upon triangulation to identify multiple viewpoints. A Stakeholder Analysis was employed to help categorise those with an interest in Intelligent Networks and provide a basis for data collection. The primary data was gathered using a combination of surveys and interviews.

The thesis illustrates a wide range of original research. A unique analysis framework was constructed to identify a number of factors, including technical and commercial influences and their impact on the choice of IN architecture and the implementation of regulations. This framework offers a new perspective with which to view IN architectures; leading to the development and implementation of alternative IN architecture models. A number of these architectures have been constructed, together with some novel services, to demonstrate what could be achieved by employing flexible, less detailed standards, or making use of proprietary protocols.

The research concludes that tight regulation is not appropriate for Intelligent Network technology. Instead, encouragement for implementation and interconnection is better shaped through the development and adoption of de-jure standards.

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