nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2010‒01‒10
two papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
University Vienna

  1. Determinants of Internet Use in Iraq By Firas H. Al-Hammadany; Almas Heshmati
  2. System Size, Lock-in and Network Effects for Patient Records By Catherine Tucker; Amalia Miller

  1. By: Firas H. Al-Hammadany; Almas Heshmati (Technology Management, Economics and Policy Program(TEMEP), Seoul National University)
    Abstract: The Internet is considered to be today¡¯s most advanced technology and a key to progress of communication and exchange of information, goods, services and technologies. Since its introduction during the late 1960s, the Internet has led to the creation of opportunities and conditions of development both for the developed and developing nations around the globe. Not all nations though welcome this particular tool of world connection. Iraq is facing huge challenges in increasing Internet penetration and usage and changing the traditional way of communication. However, this is a difficult task as there are many factors that define this transition process. This issue and more shall be better presented in this study. Through the use of a suitable approach, this study aims to explain the determinants of Internet use in Iraq. The results indicate that while the people of Iraq are eager to adopt this technology in order to reach out to the world, a number of factors like lack of adequate resources, insufficient incentives and encouragement from the government and some social inhibitions are not allowing this technology to become a public domain.
    Keywords: Internet use, benefits of Internet, purposes of using Internet, modern media, Internet use in Iraq
    JEL: C25 C35 D12 L86 L96
    Date: 2009–11
  2. By: Catherine Tucker (MIT Marketing); Amalia Miller (Economics Department, University of Virginia)
    Abstract: We examine empirically whether the size of a firm using a network affects the scope of its network usage, and consequently network effects and lock-in within the network. We use the example of hospital information exchange. We find that hospitals in larger hospital systems are more likely to exchange electronic patient information only within their system and less likely to exchange patient information externally. We show that hospitals are also more likely to exchange information externally if others hospitals also do so. This implies that the disinclination of large hospital systems to exchange data externally harms overall levels of network use. Our results highlight that makers of technology policy designed to encourage the optimal use of networks should consider regulating the behavior of network users as well as technology vendors.
    Keywords: Technology Diffusion, Health-care IT, Network Externalities, Hospitals
    JEL: I1 K2 L5 O3
    Date: 2009–08

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