Advances in wireless technology have created "cascades of innovation," and additional investment in new networks has the potential to help get the broader American economy back on track, according to a study released on Thursday by the progressive think-tank NDN and the National Policy Institute.
Researchers Robert Shapiro and Kevin Hassett concluded that transitions from early wireless networks to more advanced 3G and Internet technology led to some 1,585,000 new jobs from April 2007 to June 2011.
"Based on previous advances, the current transition to 4G technologies is likely to spur significant new job creation and growth which could help the American economy restore gains in incomes and business investment," the study predicted.
For every 10 percent increase in the adoption of 3G and 4G technologies, the study estimated that the U.S. economy could gain 231,000 jobs in "less than a year."
"The rapid deployment of 4G technologies and the innovations that will accompany them should generate significant and widespread societal gains, including a stronger economic recovery and expansion from the recent recession," the researchers wrote. "Policies to promote the full deployment of 4G, therefore, should be part of any national job creation and economic strategy."
Hassett is director of economic policy studies and resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Shapiro, a former adviser to the 2008 Obama presidential campaign, is chairman of Sonecon, a private economic consulting firm.