nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2014‒11‒17
five papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
Universität Wien

  1. The Impact of Highly-skilled ICT Labour on Firm Performance: Empirical Evidence from Six European Countries By Eva Hagsten; Anna Sabadash
  2. The Impact of the Internet on Advertising Markets for News Media By Susan Athey; Emilio Calvano; Joshua S. Gans
  3. ICT the Nordic Way and European Savings Banks By Maixe-Altes, J. Carles
  4. Services Trade Restrictiveness Index (STRI): Computer and Related Services By Hildegunn Kyvik Nordås; Massimo Geloso Grosso; Frédéric Gonzales; Iza Lejárraga; Sébastien Miroudot; Asako Ueno; Dorothée Rouzet
  5. Financial Development and the Diffusion of Technologies under Uncertainty in Africa By Zivanemoyo Chinzara

  1. By: Eva Hagsten (Statistics Sweden); Anna Sabadash (European Commission – Eurostat)
    Abstract: While unemployment in the EU is above 10%, the job vacancy rate also remains high around 1.5%. This suggests considerable unmet demand for skills, which is in the focus of the EU employment promotion policies. This paper studies the special role that schooled ICT experts in firms - an intangible input often neglected and difficult to measure – play for productivity. The effects are investigated both in isolation and in conjunction with the impact of ICT maturity on microdata in six European countries (UK, France, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland) for the period 2001-2009. We find that increases in the proportion of ICT-intensive human capital boosts productivity. This seems to confirm the case in favour of recruitment of highly skilled ICT employees. However, the gains vary across countries and industries, suggesting that the channels through which the effects operate are narrower for ICT-intensive human capital than for skilled human capital in general. Our findings provide an important message to the EU employment policy debate that currently revolves around the skill mismatch in general and the unmet demand for ICT skills in particular.
    Keywords: Employment, productivity, ICT skills
    JEL: J24
    Date: 2014–10
  2. By: Susan Athey (Stanford University); Emilio Calvano (CSEF, Università di Napoli Federico II); Joshua S. Gans (University of Toronto and NBER)
    Abstract: We provide a model of online advertising display markets where consumer attention may be divided among multiple publishers and, consequently, their advertising attention may be allocated to different platforms. We demonstrate that this gives rise to a mixture of single- and multi-homing advertisers and some consequent matching inefficiency between advertisers and consumers. Thus, as the number of switching consumers expands (associated with, say, the internet’s impact on news publishers), ad prices fall and a number of other competitive effects arise. We demonstrate that increased switching leads advertisers to favor reach over frequency and creates an incentive for contracting and technology improvements that can guarantee impressions to advertisers. Finally, we analyze the strategic choice of ad capacity, showing that, in general, increased switching leads to greater equilibrium ad capacity and lower prices.
    Keywords: advertising, media, newspapers, matching, multi-homing, singlehoming, tracking, two-sided markets, platforms
    JEL: L11 L82
    Date: 2014–10–28
  3. By: Maixe-Altes, J. Carles
    Abstract: This paper discusses the world industry of savings banks, a genuine world collaborative consortium, through which, from the 1950s, the International Savings Banks Institute (nowadays, the World Savings Banks Institute and European Savings Banks Group) was highly active in introducing ICT to retail banking. In this environment, Nordic savings banks, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark, their Central Savings Banks and their industry associations occupied a separate place in European movements around developments of computerization and automation in retail financial services. The synergies in Nordic countries were superior to the rest of Europe and collaboration was intense. This paper highlights the leadership and the influence that the ICT development models of Nordic savings banks had on their European retail banking associates.
    Keywords: computers, savings banks collaboration, retail banking, Europe, Nordic countries, technological change
    JEL: G21 N24 O33
    Date: 2014–08
  4. By: Hildegunn Kyvik Nordås; Massimo Geloso Grosso; Frédéric Gonzales; Iza Lejárraga; Sébastien Miroudot; Asako Ueno; Dorothée Rouzet
    Abstract: This paper presents the services trade restrictiveness indices (STRIs) for computer services. The STRIs are composite indices taking values between zero and one, zero representing an open market and one a market completely closed to foreign services providers. The indices are calculated for 40 countries, the 34 OECD members and Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Russia and South Africa. The STRIs capture de jure restrictions. This report presents the first vintage of indicators for computer services and captures regulations in force in 2013. The scores range between 0.08 and 0.34, with a sample average of 0.18. Explicit barriers to trade in computer services are rare, but the sector is subject to a number of economy-wide restrictions facing all sectors. Among these, restrictions on movement of people (mode 4 in GATS terminology) make the largest contribution to the index value, followed by regulatory transparency issues. The paper presents the list of measures included in the indices, the scoring and weighting system for calculating the indices and an analysis of the results.
    Keywords: services trade, services trade restrictions, computer services, regulation
    JEL: F13 F14 K33 L86
    Date: 2014–11–04
  5. By: Zivanemoyo Chinzara
    Abstract: Using novel measures of technology diffusion and adoption developed by Comin and Hobijn (2012), we examine the role of finance in the timing of adoption and the diffusion of thirteen sectoral technologies in 44 Sub-Saharan Africa countries. These technologies cover sectors such as agriculture, communication and information technology, industry, and transport. The results show that financial development enhances the timing and diffusion of technologies both directly, and indirectly, through reducing the risk associated with new technologies. However, the results differ across technologies, with the information and communication technologies showing more responsiveness to changes in financial development. There is also evidence to suggest that, subject to the level of economic development, some technologies diffusion faster, while others diffuse slower. The latter result implies that some sector-specific technologies may diffuse quicker in less developed economies, and thus economic theory needs to be extended to account for this technology-specific feature
    Keywords: Financial Depth, Technology Diffusion, Timing of Adoption, Economic Development, Macroeconomic Volatility, institutions, Dynamic panels, GMM
    JEL: E44 G21 O30 O33
    Date: 2014

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