Australia's potential internet futures: incasting alternatives using a new technology images framework

Author(s)

Burns, Alex; McGrail, Stephen

Available versions

Abstract

Australia's Federal Government announced the National Broadband Network (NBN) in 2009. NBN's current roll-out is scheduled for completion in 2021, with market forecasts estimating optical fibre overtaking DSL broadband connections in about 2015. This paper provides a timely contribution to more critical and expansive analysis of potential Australian internet futures. First, 'schools of thought' and current technological frames (Web 2.0, 'the cloud') for the internet and its possible futures are outlined, which provide perspectives on the emergence of the NBN. We then outline five generic images of the future which, as predetermined images, enable quick 'incasting' of alternative futures for a technology topic or related object of research: promised future, social/ speculative bubble(s), unfolding disruption/chaos, unintended consequences, and co-existence/'cooption'. High-level application of the 'schools' and generic images to the NBN and Australia's potential internet futures, suggests policymakers and strategists currently consider too few perspectives.

Publication year

2012

Publication type

Journal article

Source

Journal of Futures Studies, Vol. 16, no. 4 (Jun 2012), pp. 33-50

ISSN

1027-6084

Publisher

Tamkang University

Copyright

Copyright © 2012. The published version is reproduced with the permission of the publisher.

Details