Doctoral Dissertations

Keywords and Phrases

benefit-cost analysis; broadband infrastructure; impact evaluation; Regional Planning Commissions; rural broadband; socio-technical reference architecture


"The lack of adequate broadband infrastructure persists in many rural communities. Beyond funding, additional barriers persist, such as digital literacy and community-level self-efficacy. As a result, the first contribution articulates barriers at the organizational level. This work proposes a framework based on the Theory of Planned Behavior to highlight stakeholder dynamics that have constrained Regional Planning Commissions from advancing broadband infrastructure in rural areas. One approach to address these barriers is to provide stakeholders with analytical tools to evaluate the benefits and costs of various broadband options for their community since there is not a one-size-fits-all solution. To this end, there are three contributions that provide guidance for evaluating improved broadband access. The first solution proposes a benefit-cost analysis at the county-level where changes in tax revenue are used to monetize the impact of rural broadband for a hypothetical Midwest county. The second solution demonstrates a method for evaluating the benefit of broadband in terms of social impact on education, employment, and healthcare in a small under-served community in northwest Missouri. Pre- and post-survey data were used to conduct comparisons between the targeted community, which received faster internet, and control communities. The third solution describes a socio-technical reference architecture to support the development of community-driven wireless broadband projects. By providing analytical tools for evaluating the impact of broadband solutions for rural communities, this research increases the capability of local communities to identify and advocate for broadband solutions that fit their needs"--Abstract, page iv.


Canfield, Casey I.

Committee Member(s)

Long, Suzanna, 1961-
Dagli, Cihan H., 1949-
Marley, Robert J.
Baker, Denise A.


Engineering Management and Systems Engineering

Degree Name

Ph. D. in Engineering Management


The author would like to recognize the financial support provided by the U.S. Department of Education GAANN Fellowship Program (P200A180066).

The author would like to thank US Ignite for their support through Project OVERCOME.

The National Science Foundation is funding this work in part under Cooperative Agreement 2044448.


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Summer 2022

Journal article titles appearing in thesis/dissertation

  • Push them forward : Challenges in intergovernmental organizations’ influence on rural broadband infrastructure expansion
  • Impact of broadband internet on the well-being of rural counties : A benefit-cost analysis
  • Evaluating the impact of broadband access in a small underserved rural community on employment, education, and health-related internet usage.
  • A socio-technical reference architecture to represent community-driven wireless broadband projects


xiv, 159 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographic references.


© 2022 Javier Valentín-Sívico, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

File Type




Thesis Number

T 12168

Electronic OCLC #