23 March 2010

SEMINAR SERIES on ICTs POLICY RESEARCH: How Market Regulation Affects Network and Service Quality in Related Markets

SEMINAR SERIES on ICTs POLICY RESEARCH: How Market Regulation Affects Network and Service Quality in Related Markets

Gordon Klein

Tuesday, March 23th 2010 16:30pm
Room 5.09, 5th floor, North Tower, Instituto Superior Técnico
Refreshments provided

This paper analyzes the effect regulation of network infrastructure has on complementary service markets. In particular, the paper proposes a theoretical model that explains the interactions of regulation in a network sector with investement in network infrastructure and investements in complementary markets. As we will show access regulation negatively aspects the network operator’s incentives to invest into network quality, but this may be more than compensated by the increase in investment incentives for providers of complementary services so that access regulation may actually increase the perceived overall quality level for final consumers.



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Topic: Gordon Klein - How Market Regulation Affects Network and Service Quality in Related Markets
Date: Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Time: 4:30 pm, GMT Time (London, GMT)
Meeting Number: 842 075 914
Meeting Password: epp2010
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09 March 2010

1st Workshop on the Economics of ICTs

On March 11th, 2010, will be held the 1st Workshop on the Economics of ICTs at the Faculdade de Economia at Universidade do Porto, in Porto, Portugal. This event is organized by the Carnegie Mellon Portugal Program - Instituto Superior Técnico, with the Center for Economics and Finance at Universidade do Porto (cef.up), and the Center for Advanced Studies in Management and Economics (CEFAGE).
The goal of this event is to discuss the recent changes in the telecommunications sector: competition between networks and between operators, the after-markets, the entry of new firms and sector regulation. The keynote speech will be done by José Manuel Amado da Silva, president of ANACOM. This workshop is intended for academics, Ph.D. and MSc Students, policy markets, and members of industry.
To register please contact Ana Bonança (abonanca@fep.up.pt).
More informations available at

Carnegie Mellon|Portugal Program Celebrates Success of Scholars at 2010 Diploma Ceremony

The Carnegie Mellon Portugal Program honored 60 graduates on Feb. 22 during a graduation ceremony in Portugal. The master's degree recipients represented the Universidade de Aveiro, the Universidade de Coimbra, the Universidade de Lisboa, the Universidade de Madeira and Carnegie Mellon.
For more: http://www.cmu.edu/news/archive/2010/February/feb19_portugalgraduation.shtml

04 March 2010

Priberam Machine Learning Lunch Seminar: "Text-Driven Forecasting: Meaning as a Real Number"

Speaker: Noah A. Smith (http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~nasmith/)
Venue: IST Alameda, Sala PA2 (Edifício de Pós-Graduação)
Date: Tuesday, March 9th, 2010
Time: 13:00
Lunch will be provided

We take inspiration from recent research on sentiment analysis that interprets text based on the subjective attitude of the author. We consider related tasks where a piece of text is interpreted to predict some extrinsic, real-valued outcome of interest that can be observed in non-text data. Examples include:
* The interpretation of an annual financial report from a company to its shareholders is the risk incurred by investing in the company in the coming year.
* The interpretation of a critic's review of a film is the film's box office success.
* The interpretation of a political blog post is the response it garners from readers.
* The interpretation of a day's microblog feeds is the public's opinion about a particular issue.

In all of these cases, one aspect of the text's meaning is observable from objective real-world data, although perhaps not immediately at the time the text is published (respectively: return volatility, gross revenue, user comments, and traditional polls). We propose a generic approach to text-driven forecasting that is expected to benefit from linguistic analysis while remaining neutral to different theories of language. A highly attractive property of this line of research is that evaluation is objective, inexpensive, and theory-neutral. This approach introduces some methodological challenges, as well.

We conjecture that forecasting tasks, when considered in concert, will be a driving force in domain-specific, empirical, and extrinsically useful natural language analysis. Further, this research direction will push NLP to consider the language of a more diverse subset of the population, and may support inquiry in the social sciences about foreknowledge and communication in societies.

This talk includes joint work with Ramnath Balasubramanyan, William Cohen, Dipanjan Das, Kevin Gimpel, Mahesh Joshi, Shimon Kogan, Dimitry Levin, Brendan O'Connor, Bryan Routledge, Jacob Sagi, and Tae Yano.

Bio: Noah Smith is an assistant professor in the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science, as a Hertz Foundation Fellow, from Johns Hopkins University in 2006 and his B.S. in Computer Science and B.A. in Linguistics from the University of Maryland in 2001. His research interests include statistical natural language processing, especially unsupervised methods, machine learning for structured data, and applications of natural language processing. He serves on the editorial board of the journal Computational Linguistics and received a best paper award at the ACL 2009 conference. His ten-person group, Noah's ARK, is supported by the NSF, DARPA, Qatar NRF, Portugal FCT, and gifts from Google, HP Labs, and IBM Research.
More informations available at www.cmuportugal.org

SEMINAR SERIES on ICTs POLICY RESEARCH: Estimating the impact of telecommunications policies on mobile penetration and usage

Dr. Jonathan Sandbach, Head of Regulatory Economics, Group External Affairs, Vodafone

Tuesday, March 9th 2010 17:00pm
Room 5.09, 5th floor, North Tower, Instituto Superior Técnico

This paper estimates the impact of telecommunications policies on mobile penetration and usage across developed and emerging markets. The analysis takes into account non-policy drivers and the interaction different policies have on each other. Our analysis shows that explicit policy decisions such as the level of mobile termination rate (MTRs) and taxation rate on profits have large and significant effects on penetration. Mobile usage, on the other hand, is poorly explained by the observed policy variables. As such, policies designed to increase usage would likely be ineffective. These findings are important as we see pressure worldwide for an acceleration of reduction in the level of MTRs and an increasing trend of higher taxation on mobile operators. Both of these policies are likely to lead to a lower level of mobile penetration than would otherwise be the case.

For those who won't be able to be in the conference room at IST, you can attend the seminar online through WebEx (link and instructions below).

More informations available at www.cmuportugal.org.