The Theory of ‘Diffusion of Innovations” and Next Generation 911

January 2nd, 2018

Posted In: Next Generation 911 Networks

Bringing the theory of ‘diffusion of innovations’ to Next Gen 911

Going forward, out with the old and in with the new should be the goal—but to do that, the sector will need some help

The 911 sector has struggled historically with shedding legacy networks and systems, and is following suite in the transition to Next Gen 911. This report discusses how a “planned retirement” is one way that the industry can buck that trend.

It looks at a well-known theory by Everett M. Rogers, described as the ‘diffusion of innovations’ to the public safety sector. The theory discusses how innovation, such as Next Generation 911 (NG911), plays out within a given social group, like public safety communications, and breaks the group down into give distinct categories. These categories include:

  • Innovators – or those who have already implemented NG911 systems or have deployed ESInets
  • Early adopters – or those who have implemented 911 call handling systems that are compliant with NENA’s i3 standards
  • Early majority – or those who are beginning to migrate to NG911
  • Late majority – or those who are less likely to migrate to NG911 until it’s been proven successful or when a federal mandate forces their hand
  • Laggards – the last group that will implement NG911

This whitepaper also discussed “the chasm,” or the key to accelerating NG911 adoption, and what will be required in order for a domino effect that will result in rapid acceleration in NG911 adoption.

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