Feature Story

Innovation Leadership: A Conversation with Robert Pepper, Cisco VP Global Technology Policy

Innovation Leadership is an occasional series focused on capturing the insights and opinions of thought leaders in business, technology and academia.

Robert Pepper leads Cisco's Global Technology Policy team working with governments across the world in areas such as broadband, IP enabled services, wireless and spectrum policy, security, privacy, Internet governance and ICT development. In this video Pepper talks about his experience working leaders around the world, Cisco's role as trusted advisor, and the importance of open and fair telcom policies.

Full Transcript:

Unless you enable the innovation in the information technologies, you are going to limit innovation across all other sectors of an economy. 

Innovation Leadership: A Conversation with Robert Pepper, Vice President Global Technology Policy, Cisco

It's working with government leaders in every corner of the world, whether it's the most developed country or some of the really, you know, emerging economies to make a difference where you can actually see after a year and a half or two years, a new technology being deployed, new services being deployed, people using those technologies.

Prescription for ICT Public Policy

One size doesn't fit all, but there are some basic principles. The first one is competition actually works. When you have more players and more entry it actually leads to investment, innovation, increased adoption. Second, the government policies and regulatory processes have to be open, fair, transparent and you need an independent regulator. Third, you actually have to not only tolerate, but encourage challengers and disruption. Disruptive technologies have actually led to a lot of innovation.

Working to Make a Global Difference

I was having a conversation with the Minister of Communications and the Chair of the Regulatory Commission from Oman recently. They had just legalized voice-over IP and they're saying it's amazing, and as a result they've seen huge benefits, and you know, new technologies, new services, lower cost telecommunications. And it's all because the government permitted it, instead of prohibiting it.

Cisco as Trusted Advisor

Government officials globally use our data when they make decisions about broadband. Our VNI data, visual networking index data, on the growth of data demand and consumption across the networks, globally, by country, by region, has become the absolute gold standard. That's fact based decision making and that makes a difference. That's unique, no other company does that.

Innovation is Happening at Cisco