nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2014‒03‒08
four papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
University Vienna

  1. The structure of online activism By Kevin Lewis; Kurt Gray; Jens Meierhenrich
  2. The Adoption of Information and Communication Technologies in the Design Sector and their impact on Firm Performance: Evidence from the Dutch Design Sector By Sadaf Bashir; Uwe Matzat; Bert Sadowski
  3. Taxes on the internet : Deterrence effects of public disclosure By Erlend E. Bø; Joel Slemrod; Thor O. Thoresen
  4. Power and interests in information and communication technologies and development: exogenous and endogenous discourses in contention By Robin Mansell

  1. By: Kevin Lewis; Kurt Gray; Jens Meierhenrich
    Abstract: Despite the tremendous amount of attention that has been paid to the internet as a tool for civic engagement, we still have little idea how “active” is the average online activist or how social networks matter in facilitating electronic protest. In this paper, we use complete records on the donation and recruitment activity of 1.2 million members of the Save Darfur “Cause” on Facebook to provide a detailed first look at a massive online social movement. While both donation and recruitment behavior are socially patterned, the vast majority of Cause members recruited no one else into the Cause and contributed no money to it-suggesting that in the case of the Save Darfur campaign, Facebook conjured an illusion of activism rather than facilitating the real thing.
    Keywords: social networks; social movements; social media; online activism; Facebook; Save Darfur
    JEL: L91 L96
    Date: 2014–02–18
  2. By: Sadaf Bashir; Uwe Matzat; Bert Sadowski
    Abstract: This paper analyzes processes and effects of ICT enabled innovation in the Dutch design sector. Although the adoption of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) is considered as vital in the design sector, little is known about whether and how ICTs affect the firm performance of small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) in the industry. In introducing a conceptual distinction between ICT supporting the information processing and communication, the paper first examines the determinants of ICT adoption. Next, we analyze the effects of ICT adoption on product and process innovation as well as on firm performance, focusing on the mediating role of the innovation processes. The analyses rest on survey data of a sample of 189 Dutch companies in the Web, Graphic, and Industrial Design Sector in the Netherlands. The results indicate that information processing role of ICT supports the exploitation and communication role facilitates the exploration in organizational learning. The exploitation enables process innovation while exploration enables product innovation. Lastly, Information processing technologies and product innovation are important determinants of superior firm performance.
    Keywords: ICT, design, innovation
    Date: 2014–02
  3. By: Erlend E. Bø; Joel Slemrod; Thor O. Thoresen (Statistics Norway)
    Abstract: Supporters of public disclosure of personal tax information point to its deterrent effect on tax evasion, but this effect has not been empirically explored. Although Norway has a long tradition of public disclosure of tax filings, it took a new direction in 2001 when anyone with access to the Internet could obtain individual information on income, wealth, and income and wealth taxes paid. We exploit this change in the degree of exposure to identify the effects of public disclosure on income reporting. Identification of the deterrence effects of public disclosure is facilitated by the fact that, prior to the shift to the Internet in 2001, some municipalities had exposure which was close to the Internet type of public disclosure, as tax information was distributed widely through paper catalogues that were locally disseminated. We observe income changes that are consistent with public disclosure deterring tax evasion: an approximately 3 percent higher average increase in reported income is found among business owners living in areas where the switch to Internet disclosure represented a large change in access.
    Keywords: Tax Evasion; Income reporting; Quasi-experiments
    JEL: H24 H26 H30
    Date: 2014–01
  4. By: Robin Mansell
    Abstract: This paper illustrates the persistence of an exogenous model of development that underpins many interventions aimed at employing information and communication technologies (ICTs) to meet development goals. The analysis is based on a sample of texts from reports produced by United Nations agencies and the World Bank. The aim is to show how the discourse on ICT interventions invariably is reminiscent of a dominant exogenous model even when alternative models with respect to development are seen to influence policy and practice. It is argued that practice-based, emergence approaches offer an attractive, although insufficient, way forward.
    Keywords: development models; ICT policy; emergence
    JEL: L91 L96
    Date: 2014–07–10

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