nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2006‒08‒05
two papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
University Vienna

  1. The situation of electronic, information and communications technologies in France : current trends and future prospec By Marc Maurice
  2. Prepaid cards: an important innovation in financial services By Julia S. Cheney; Sherrie L.W. Rhine

  1. By: Marc Maurice (LEST - Laboratoire d'économie et de sociologie du travail - [CNRS : UMR6123] - [Université de Provence - Aix-Marseille I][Université de la Méditerranée - Aix-Marseille II])
    Abstract: There is a widespread consensus among experts as to the crucial importance of what are known as the “new information and communications technologies” (NICTs) for economic growth and employment in a new millennium characterised by the onward march of economic globalisation. Undoubtedly, the areas of activity subsumed under the general NICT heading seem much broader than the definitions adopted for the international surveys associated with the Denki Rengo. However, there is enough overlap between the various areas for them to serve as a backdrop to this report on the French situation in these sectors. The report will deal in succession with the following points : 1. some observations on the definition of the technologies as a whole and their “comparability” across countries ; 2. the French situation in the electronics, computer and telecommunications sectors, together with future trends ; 3. the evolution of employment in the various sectors ; 4. the industrial relations situation in these sectors : recent developments and new issues ; 5. some findings from the Audit of french firms.
    Keywords: ICT - Information and communication technologies; ICT industry; Industrial and employment relations; France
    Date: 2006–07–21
  2. By: Julia S. Cheney; Sherrie L.W. Rhine
    Abstract: This paper describes the characteristics of closed-system and open-system prepaid cards. Of particular interest is a class of open-system programs that offer a set of features similar to conventional deposit accounts using card-based payment applications. The benefits that open-system prepaid cards offer for consumers, providers, and issuing banks contribute to the increased adoption of these payment applications. Using these cards, consumers can pay bills, make purchases, and get cash from ATM networks. At the same time, consumers who hold prepaid cards need not secure a traditional banking relationship nor gain approval for a deposit account or revolving credit. By offering prepaid cards, issuing banks may meet the financial needs of consumers who may not otherwise qualify for more traditional banking products and these banks may do so with a card-based electronic payment application that essentially eliminates credit risk for the bank.
    Keywords: Payment systems
    Date: 2006

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