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Spectrum Policy Initiative for the 21st Century

"Wireless" communications are an essential element in providing the fabric of an open and free society. There is a rapidly increasing role for “wireless” services in ensuring the effectiveness of national and homeland defenses, in making available public safety and first-responder services, in creating jobs and promoting economic growth, in supporting space and scientific research, and in maintaining national leadership in radiocommunications technology and services. Consequently, the demands on the use of the radio frequency spectrum are rapidly increasing, both for Federal government and non-Federal users.

To address these concerns, the United States established a program to review existing policies and, where appropriate, implement new spectrum management policies to ensure that the United States will be able to satisfy its domestic and international uses of the spectrum. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration initiated this program in FY03 and has proceeded as directed in Executive Memoranda dated May 29, 2003 and November 30, 2004. In these memoranda the President commits the Administration to promote and implement a United States Spectrum Policy for the 21st Century. The 2004 Executive Memorandum directs the United States Department of Commerce and other Federal agencies to take a number of specific actions to improve spectrum management.

Thus far, NTIA has issued: a comprehensive report on Federal spectrum use entitled The Federal Strategic Spectrum Plan; an Implementation Plan for the Spectrum Policy Initiative; and annual progress reports on the Initiative for 2005, 2006 and FY2007. In addition, an Implementation Plan for Developing Incentives for Efficient Spectrum Use was issued. A report on interoperability between Federal and non-Federal public safety entities was published, and two reports on international aspects of spectrum management. In addition, NTIA is conducting a spectrum sharing innovation test-bed pilot program to identify the feasibility of spectrum sharing between Federal and non-Federal users. Also, a public advisory committee, the Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee (CSMAC), is developing recommendations for the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information on possible actions to improve spectrum management in the Federal sector.

Further details on the Spectrum Policy Initiative can be obtained from Byron Barker, Chief, Strategic Planning Division, Office of Spectrum Management, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (email: bbarker@ntia.doc.gov; tel: 202 482 6207; fax: 202 566 2440).


More Information

Commece Spectrum Management Advisory Committee: The Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee advises the Commerce Department on key elements of President Bush’s 21st Century Spectrum Policy Initiative for improving management of the nation’s airwaves.

Spectrum Sharing Innovation Test-Bed Pilot Program: The Test-Bed Pilot Program will evaluate the ability of Dynamic Spectrum Access (DSA) devices employing spectrum sensing and/or geo-location techniques to share spectrum with land mobile radio systems operating in the 410-420 MHz band. 

FY2007 Progress Report on the Spectrum Policy Initiative: The progress report provides information on activities within the Federal agencies as well as NTIA on the Spectrum Policy Initiative.

2008 Update to the Implementation Plan:The 2008 Update to the Implementation Plan documents the accomplishments to date with respect to the Spectrum Policy Initiative and provides information on future activities.

The Federal Strategic Spectrum Plan: The Federal Strategic Spectrum Plan, released in March 2008, provides a comprehensive overview of Federal Spectrum use and sets forth a strategy to ensure that spectrum management will evolve to meet Federal and non-Federal requirements.

Improving International Spectrum Management Policies and Framework, March, 2008: This Report reviews barriers to introduction of U.S. telecommunication technology and services internationally.

Plan to Identify and Implement Incentives that Promote More Efficient and Effective Use of Spectrum [Html, Word, PDF]

• A Public Safety Sharing Demonstration, June 2007 (the WARN Report)

• Second Annual Progress Report on the President's Initiative: The progress report provides information on activities within the Federal agencies as well as NTIA on the Spectrum Policy Initiative.

• Spectrum Management Workshop: NTIA sponsored a workshop on Improving Spectrum Management through Economic or Other Incentives on February 28 - March 1, 2006 at the National Academy of Sciences. The workshop elicited views and proposals regarding the use of economic or other incentives to increase spectrum management efficiency.
Final agenda [ -- MS Word -- Acrobat PDF -- ]
Transcript: February 28, 2006 [ -- MS Word -- Acrobat PDF -- ]
Transcript: March 1, 2006 [ -- MS Word -- Acrobat PDF -- ]

Plan to Implement Recommendations of the President's Spectrum Policy Initiative

Text of November 30, 2004, Executive Memorandum on Spectrum Policy Reform [PDF]

Text of May 29, 2003, Executive Memorandum on Spectrum Policy Reform

The Federal Government Spectrum Task Force

NTIA's Public Outreach Program

NTIA's Notice of Inquiry on Spectrum Policy Reform and Comments Received



Links to other Websites

 • Interdepartment Radio Advisory Committee (IRAC) Membership [PDF]
 • Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
    - FCC Spectrum Policy Task Force Documents
 •  International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
    - ITU Radiocommunications (R) Sector
    - ITU Telecom. Development Bureau (D Sector) 1998 - 2002 (Res. 9 Phase 1)
    - ITU Telecom. Development Bureau (D Sector) 2002 - 2006 (Res. 9 Phase 2)
    - ITU Council
 • National Academy of Sciences
    - NAS Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB)
 • Center for Strategic and International Studies: Spectrum Management
 • United Kingdom Office of Communications (OFCOM)
 • Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA)

 
SEARCH:

Link to NTIA Manual of Frequency Management

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Spectrum Policy Initiative


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Link to US Frequency Allocation Chart



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