Marjaana Ivanov

Title: High-speed Broadband Internet Connection Enablers and Barriers in the Small State Context: The Case of Estonia

Supervisor: Dr. Ralf-Martin Soe

Opponent: Dr. Amirouche Moktefi

Defense: 18 January 2023


Abstract: In 2016, the EU has declared, that to increase the European competitiveness and innovation, provide challenging earning opportunities for young people, prevent relocation of economic activity, and attract inward investments, the member states need to start developing high-speed broadband connection networks to every household. For these investments subsidiary funds were established and the aim was to make Europe the best continent with the high-speed broadband network coverage. According to these ambitions the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication in Estonia conducted consultations for the “Estonian Broadband Development plan 2030”. Compared to other European member states, Estonia is a small country territorially, and very small in terms of population. Estonian current policy, to build as many high-speed internet broadband NGA networks with as few financial means as possible has not been cost effective. Broadband NGA networks have just been built, without any mapping and deeper consultation with local municipalities or communities and the connected consumers rate is also very low. This paper aims to explain the enablers and barriers of the high-speed broadband network development through a qualitative case study, semi-structured interviews, and document analysis.


Keywords: Broadband network, NGA, rural internet, community resilience.