nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2011‒01‒23
two papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
University Vienna

  1. Got Technology? The Impact of Computers and Cell Phones on Productivity in a Difficult Business Climate: Evidence from Firms with Female Owners in Kenya By Menon, Nidhiya
  2. Enterprise software and service innovation: Standardization versus customization By Engelstätter, Benjamin; Sarbu, Miruna

  1. By: Menon, Nidhiya (Brandeis University)
    Abstract: Firms in Kenya rely on technologies such as computers, cell-phones, and generators to overcome constraints associated with regulations, infrastructure, security, workforce, corruption, and finance. This study shows that such reliance has significant positive impacts on productivity as measured by value-added per worker, especially for firms with female principal owners. The exogenous component of technology ownership is isolated by using information on the regional presence of missionary schools from Kenya's colonial past, as well as geographical indicators such as rainfall, changes in forest cover, and average regional elevation. Results indicate that for firms with female owners, technology adoption improves value-added per worker by about 49 percentage points. It is also statistically evident that for such firms, the ownership of technologies such as computers, cell-phones, and generators succeeds in mitigating the costs of business obstacles. For male-owned firms, such patterns are absent.
    Keywords: technology, computers, cell-phones, business obstacles, Kenya, firms, female owners
    JEL: O14 O33 L22 N37
    Date: 2011–01
  2. By: Engelstätter, Benjamin; Sarbu, Miruna
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the relationship between service innovation and different types of enterprise software systems, i.e. standardized enterprise software designed to fit one certain business sector and enterprise software specifically customized for a single firm. Using firm-level data of a survey among ICT service providers and knowledge-intensive service providers in Germany, this is the first paper empirically analyzing whether both types of enterprise software foster innovation in the service sector. The analysis is based on a knowledge production function. The results reveal that there is no relationship between sector specific enterprise software and innovation activity while customized enterprise software is possibly related to the probability of service innovation. The results stay robust if former innovation activity and general openness to new technologies are controlled for. --
    Keywords: enterprise systems,service innovation,customized enterprise software,sector specific enterprise software
    JEL: L10 M20 O31
    Date: 2010

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