Federal Communications Law Journal

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Citation

50 Federal Communications Law Journal 87 (1997)


With the increasing demand for spectrum to accommodate emerging technologies, and the discovery that higher frequencies are usable, the FCC has replaced its reliance on administrative mechanisms for allocating spectrum with a more flexible, market-based approach. The FCC can best accomplish its mission of promoting the public interest by continuing to rely on competitive market forces and by establishing a clear and consistent paradigm for approaching allocation, assignment, usage, and other policies. Such a paradigm envisions an FCC that would actively monitor spectrum to remedy situations in which it is not used to its full value; establish mechanisms to reduce new services' need for immediate secondary market transactions; set and enforce minimally restrictive baseline rules governing interference and health effects; maximize the amount of spectrum available to users; and, in some cases, intervene in markets to correct significant market failures.