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Photo of Pedro  Ferreira

Pedro Ferreira

Assistant Professor of Information Systems

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Email: pedrof@cmu.edu
Personal Website

Biography

RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

I pursue three lines of related research using both theoretical as well as empirical approaches. My research interests rely on understanding how people use technology and influence each other to do so and how firms and regulation interact to shape telecommunication and information markets.

Economic Impact of ICTs in Education

This line of research is devoted to measure the economic impact of ICTs, and broadband in particular, in schools and universities. Economic impact is measured through academic performance as well as widespread adoption and use of broadband. A series of empirical papers are under preparation and/or submitted for publication:

  1. "The Effects of Broadband in Schools on Students' Performance", with Rodrigo Belo and Rahul Telang. This paper shows that the introduction of broadband in schools leads to a decrease in grades in the short-term.
  2. "Impact of Wireless Internet on Graduate Academic Performance", with Ryan Turner. This paper shows that higher usage of wireless Internet in the University of Porto is associated with better academic performance.
  3. "Spillover Effects of Wiring Schools with Broadband". This paper shows that wiring schools with broadband in Portugal led to an increase in the overall Internet traffic in the country.
  4. "Spillover Effects of Broadband in Schools and the Critical Role of Children", with Rodrigo Belo and Rahul Telang. This paper shows that deploying broadband to schools leads to an increase in the household adoption rate of Internet.
  5. "Family Spillover Effects of Broadband Internet in Schools", with Rodrigo Belo. In this paper we expect to address the issue of whether adults in the household use more Internet as a result of having children in school that do so (still in preliminary stage).

Data Analytics in Social Networks

This line of research is focused on analyzing large datasets on consumer behavior to empirically establish and measure the effect of peer influence over social networks in network churn and purchase of cell phone related products. A number of papers are under preparation and/or submitted for publication:

  1. "Social Network Data Lifts Prediction of Near-Future Mobile Churners", withPavel Krivistky. This paper shows that using data about the social circle allows for better predicting churners in cell phone networks.
  2. "Contagious Churn in Cell Phone Networks", with Pavel Krivitsky and Rahul Telang. This paper shows that when a consumer leaves a cell phone operator her friends' propensity to follow increases.
  3. "Diffusion and Influence over Cell Phone Networks", with Rodrigo Belo. This paper uses randomization techniques to establish what kind of cell phone products diffuse based on peer influence.
  4. "Diffusion of Handsets over Cell Phone Networks", with Miguel Matos. This paper shows the effect of peer influence in the diffusion of cell phone handsets.
  5. "Peer influence in Shurn over in Cell Phone Networks", with Qiwei Han. This paper identifies the determinants of churn in cell phone networks.
  6. "Determinants of the Life Cycle of Tweets", wih Vasco Pedro and Miguel Matos. In this paper we hope to characterize the life cycle of tweets and understand better the determinants of successful tweets (still in preliminary stage).

Regulation of Telecom Markets

This line of research looks at the structure of telecom markets with emphasis on local networks. The impact of wholesale price regulation is analyzed from an economic perspective. Option theory is used to address issues of asymmetric value between infrastructure and virtual providers.

  1. "Wholesale Price Regulation in Telecoms with Endogenous Entry and Simultaneous Markets", with Miguel Matos. This paper predicts entry into local NGN telecom markets as a function of wholesale regulation and shows that current EU practice to deregulate these markets might hurt welfare.
  2. "Using Contingent Claim Theory to Price Flexibility in Local Access Markets", with Michael Oraro. This paper uses option theory to price the flexibility provided to virtual operators who can time entry with the stochastic dynamics of downstream retail value.
  3. "Pricing Flexibility in Subloop Unbundling", with Michael Oraro. This paper uses option theory to price the flexibility provided to virtual operators who can use unbundled network elements to compete in local access markets (still in early stage).
  4. "Welfare Changes in the Cournot Setting and Application to the ICT Sector". This paper shows how the change in the number of firms in a market with economies of scale affects welfare in the absence of regulation.
  5. "The Efficiency of Cournot Equilibrium and Application to the ICT Sector". This paper shows how the change in the number of firms in a market with economies of scale hurts welfare relative to the welfare generated by a fully regulated monopolist.

DUAL PHD PROGRAM IN ENGINEERING AND PUBLIC POLICY

Carnegie Mellon University embarked in a major partnership with a number of Portuguese Universities to develop joint research projects and graduate educational programs. For more information visit CMU-Portugal. I have been responsible for the Dual PhD Program in Engineering and Public Policy, offered jointly by the Department of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Melon University, Instituto Superior Tecnico of the Technical University of Lisbon and the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Porto.

This program focus on critical infrastructures, with specializations in information networks management and policy and in energy policy and management. Students spend half of the time before they graduate at CMU and the other half in Portugal. Upon successful completion of the requirements to graduate students obtain two PhD diplomas, one from Carnegie Mellon University and another one from the Portuguese University they enrolled with. Deadline for applications is January 15th every year. Fellowships covering full tuition and stipend for four years are available for the top candidates.

Education

5-year BSc, Systems and Computer Science, Specialization in Industrial Informatics
Instituto Superior Tecnico, 1996

MSc, Engineering Policy, Innovation and Management of Technology
Instituto Superior Tecnico, 1999

MSc, Electrical & Computer Engineering and Technology Policy
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2002

PhD, Engineering and Public Policy Specialization in Telecom Policy
Carnegie Mellon University, 2004