nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2010‒10‒30
three papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
University Vienna

  1. Understanding the Dimensions of Young Consumer Vulnerability in the Web 2.0 Society By Wided Batat
  2. ABC, 123: The Impact of a Mobile Phone Literacy Program on Educational Outcomes By Jenny C. Aker, Christopher Ksoll, and Travis J. Lybbert
  3. An Analysis of the Openness of the Web2.0 Service Network Based on Two Sets of Indices for Measuring the Impact of Service Ownership By Kibae Kim; Jorn Altmann; Junseok Hwang

  1. By: Wided Batat (COACTIS - Université Lumière - Lyon II : EA4161 - Université Jean Monnet - Saint-Etienne)
    Abstract: The young consumers constitute one of the fastest growing Internet populations. This group of consumers spends more time online than adults and surpasses all other age groups in their use of chat, instant messaging and other new forms of electronic communication. Thus, Internet technologies have the potential to promote a power shift from sellers to buyers. Consequently, the global reach of the Internet facilitates young consumer access to more market information that involves larger choice sets, consumer ability to exchange information and opinion with peers. We can argue that teenagers are fully competent consumers because almost adolescents revealed competency in some aspects of consumption such as: using Internet and blogs to improve their consumption skills, comparison shopping, innovation by consumption and usage. However, teenagers could be considered as victimised consumers because of their vulnerability and the lack of their experiences and knowledge in terms of consumption and purchasing. In addition, today's young consumers are facing a new risk related to technologies usages. In order to develop a better understanding of young consumers' vulnerability, it is important to explore the areas and the behaviours associated with the vulnerable young consumers within a marketplace surrounded by technologies.
    Keywords: young consumer, vulnerability, Web 2.0, Consumption, education, consumer policy, competence
    Date: 2010–06–23
  2. By: Jenny C. Aker, Christopher Ksoll, and Travis J. Lybbert
    Abstract: CGD non-resident fellow Jenny Aker and co-authors report on the results from a randomized evaluation of a mobile phone education program (Project ABC) in Niger, in which adult students learned how to use mobile phones as part of a literacy and numeracy class. Overall, students demonstrated substantial improvements in literacy and numeracy test scores. There is also evidence of persistent impacts: six months after the end of the first year of classes, students in the program retained what they had learned better than others. The effects do not appear to be driven by differences in teacher quality or in teacher and student attendance. The results suggest that simple and relatively cheap information and communication technology can serve as an effective and sustainable learning tool for rural populations.
    Keywords: Education
    Date: 2010–09
  3. By: Kibae Kim (Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), Seoul National University); Jorn Altmann (Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), Seoul National University); Junseok Hwang (Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), Seoul National University)
    Abstract: One of the important characteristics of Web2.0 is the collaboration between Web2.0 service providers. They allow users (i.e., providers, developers, consumers) to combine their services. The prerequisite for this collaboration is openness of the Web2.0 service system. Although the Web2.0 technology allows the linking of different heterogeneous Web2.0 services freely, it is only assumed that the Web2.0 system is socially open as well. Until now, it has not been studied whether it is socially open and, if so, to what degree. In this paper, we address this shortcoming by creating and analyzing the Web2.0 service network. The nodes of this network are Web2.0 services and links represent the existence of mashups. In order to measure how much the Web2.0 service network is socially open, we use six openness indices, which are based on Krackhardt and Stern¡¯s EI-Index. Our results show that the Web2.0 is not fully socially open. The reason is that users of Web2.0 services do not leverage the openness provided by the technology. Instead, they prefer using Web2.0 services of those providers that they already know, i.e. the ownership of the service impacts the users¡¯ choices.
    Keywords: Web2.0 Service, Mashup, Social Network Analysis, Openness, Subgroups.
    JEL: C02 C43 D02 D21 D23 D85 L14 L16 L22 L86 M21 O31 O32 O33
    Date: 2010–10

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