White House publishes national spectrum strategy to improve spectrum management

The White House has published a landmark National Spectrum Strategy and a Presidential Memorandum on modernizing US spectrum policy that, together, lay out a blueprint for American innovation, competition, and security in advanced wireless technologies.

The strategy aims to modernize spectrum policy and make the most efficient use possible of national spectrum resources, including expanding access to advanced wireless broadband networks and technologies, whether terrestrial-, airspace-, satellite- or space-based operations.

As a result of ongoing innovations in wireless technologies, demand for spectrum access is growing rapidly. In the private sector, next-generation Wi-Fi networks, large satellite constellations in lowEarth orbit, rapidly increasing space launch cadences, aggregated data transfer requirements, 5G and 6G broadband networks, private wireless networks, autonomous vehicles, and other advanced systems drive demand. Dynamic spectrum sharing is one key to meet these growing demands, and the United States is uniquely positioned to embrace a whole-of-Nation approach to advance the state of technology for dynamic forms of sharing.

The Strategy adopts and describes four pillars with several corresponding strategic objectives for immediate and sustained attention and effort:

  • Pillar One: A Spectrum Pipeline to Ensure US Leadership in Advanced and Emerging Technologies
  • Pillar Two: Collaborative Long-Term Planning to Support the Nation’s Evolving Spectrum Needs
  • Pillar Three: Unprecedented Spectrum Innovation, Access, and Management through Technology Development
  • Pillar Four: Expanded Spectrum Expertise and Elevated National Awareness

The strategy also recognises “the United States needs a better and more consistent process for bringing the public and private sectors together to work through the difficult issues surrounding access to spectrum, including dynamic forms of spectrum sharing.”

The document sets out US government plans to engage with stakeholders and to publish an implementation plan with details about responsible parties and timelines to achieve specific outcomes associated with each strategic objective identified in the strategy. This will help to address spectrum challenges facing the Nation, including charting a path to satisfy current and future spectrum access requirements.

The White House also published a fact sheet that expands on the actions required to fulfil the objectives of the four pillars and bring stakeholders together to achieve spectrum management targets.

The Strategy was developed by the National Telecommunications Information Administration (NTIA) in response to direction from President Biden, in close coordination with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the many federal agencies relying on spectrum. It articulates four pillars containing essential actions for ensuring that spectrum policy advances US innovation, economic vitality, and security.

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