The International Handbook of Telecommunications Economics, Volume III
Edited by Gary Madden
Chapter 17: Organizational change in Australasian telecommunications companies
Mark A. Shadur, Kellie Caught and René Kienzle INTRODUCTION Major reforms in the telecommunications regulatory framework have taken place in Australia and New Zealand in recent years. In 1991 the Australian government began dismantling the monopoly position held by Telstra (the wholly government owned telecommunications carrier), and in 1992 a second carrier licence was issued. Further steps toward deregulation were established as a lead-up to open competition, which commenced on 1 July 1997. In New Zealand, deregulation began earlier and went much further and faster. The New Zealand government did not initially establish an industry regulator; instead, it relied on the market and legal system to shape the context in which telecommunications companies operate. Deregulation has been initiated by governments in Australasia and elsewhere as a means for improving quality and eﬃciency, and to decrease costs. Advocates of deregulation note that telecommunications is a truly international industry and so warrants decreased restrictions on trade and investment. A great deal of attention has been given to the policy and regulatory framework and how to achieve competition among telecommunications companies (see OECD, 1998). In comparison, analysts have been silent on how telecommunications companies actually respond to the competitive environment and change their internal management systems and practices in order to achieve improved outcomes. Policy analysts have generally shied away from considering intra-organizational processes. In this chapter the interplay between policy and regulatory change in Australia and New Zealand, and the transformations occurring in management practices in four telecommunications companies are examined....
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