Abstract: This talk offers a reflection on the difficult transition from inception to adoption that network technologies often face. New networking technologies are confronted by multiple structural challenges that range from the presence of strong externalities to a web of dependencies across stake-holders that each create significant hurdles to their adoption. The talk starts with a brief overview of how to conceptually capture those many challenges and the outcomes to which they can give rise. This is then followed by data and findings from two empirical studies. The first targeted IPv6 and sought to elucidate the reasons behind its arduous path to "success." The second took on a broader view and relied on a comprehensive statistical analysis of Internet standards (RFCs) to try to identify factors that play an important role in their ultimate adoption. The talk concludes with a few recommendations on factors that protocol designers may want to be aware of.
* This talk is based on discussions and collaborations with numerous colleagues, post-docs and students.
Quantitative results are primarily from the following papers:
 R. Guerin and K. Hosanagar, "Fostering IPv6 Migration Through Network Quality Differentials." ACM SIGCOMM Computer Communication Review, Vol. 40, No. 3, July 2010.
 S. Sen, Y. Jin, R. Guerin, and K. Hosanagar, "Modeling the Dynamics of Network Technology Adoption and the Role of Converters," IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking Vol. 18, No. 6, December 2010.
 M. Nikkhah and R. Guerin, "Migrating the Internet to IPv6: An Exploration of the When and Why." IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking, Vol. 24, No. 4, August 2016.
 M. Nikkhah, A. Mangal, C. Dovrolis, and R. Guerin, "A Statistical Exploration of Protocol Adoption." IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking, Vol. 25, No. 5, October 2017.