We estimate the impact of ultra-fast broadband on schools’ academic performance. We do so through a difference-in-difference study of a new government-promoted fibre broadband network designed to deliver ultra-fast broadband to schools and hospitals. We show that fibre broadband increases primary (elementary) schools’ passing rates in standardised assessments by roughly one percentage point. Estimates are robust to alternative specifications, including controlling for time-varying covariates. We find no evidence that gender, ethnic minorities or students in remote schools benefit disproportionately. However, we find some evidence of a larger benefit within schools having a greater proportion of students from lower socio-economic backgrounds.
Grimes, Arthur and Wilbur Townsend. 2018. "Effects of (ultra-fast) fibre broadband on student achievement." Information Economics and Policy https://doi.org/10.1016/j.infoecopol.2018.06.001