Jenner & Block

“Lessons from the US Incentive Auction,” The International Institute of Communications

Partner Howard J. Symons, a member of the firm’s Communications, Internet & Technology Practice, recently wrote an article discussing the FCC’s incentivized spectrum auction.  Co-written by Paul Milgrom and published by The International Institute of Communications in the January 2018 issue of InterMedia, the article discusses the auction’s process as well as its implications.  The auction, which concluded in April 2017, used market mechanisms to determine both supply and demand.  It succeeded in reallocating 84 megahertz of spectrum from television broadcasting to mobile broadband, and produced a surplus of nearly $7 billion, which was contributed to the US Treasury.

Before joining Jenner & Block in May 2017, Mr. Symons served as general counsel of the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and vice chair of the FCC’s Incentive Auction Task Force.  Paul Milgrom is the Shirley and Leonard Ely professor of Humanities and Sciences in the Department of Economics at Stanford University and professor, by courtesy, at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Stanford Department of Management Science and Engineering.  He is the chairman of Auctionomics, which designed and helped implement the US incentive auction.