nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2015‒05‒02
three papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
Universität Wien

  1. Integrating Mobile Phone Technologies into Labor-Market Intermediation: A Multi-Treatment Experimental Design By Dammert, Ana C.; Galdo, Jose C.; Galdo, Virgilio
  2. Are Smartphones Smart for Economic Development? By Hartje, Rebecca; Hübler, Michael
  3. IC Technology and Learning: An Impact Evaluation of Cl@ssi2.0 By Checchi, Daniele; Rettore, Enrico; Girardi, Silvia

  1. By: Dammert, Ana C. (Carleton University); Galdo, Jose C. (Carleton University); Galdo, Virgilio (World Bank)
    Abstract: This study investigates the causal impacts of integrating mobile phone technologies into traditional public labor-market intermediation services on employment outcomes. By providing faster, cheaper and up-to-date information on job vacancies via SMS, mobile phone technologies might affect the rate at which offers arrive as well as the probability of receiving a job offer. We implement a social experiment with multiple treatments that allows us to investigate both the role of information channels (digital versus non-digital) and information sets (restricted [public] versus unrestricted [public/private]). The results show positive and significant short-term effects on employment for public labor-market intermediation. While the impacts from traditional labor-market intermediation are not large enough to be statistically significant, the unrestricted digital treatment group shows statistically significant short-term employment effects. As for potential matching efficiency gains, the results suggest no statistically significant effects associated with either information channels or information sets.
    Keywords: mobile phones, labor-market intermediation, ICT, field experiments, Peru
    JEL: I3 J2
    Date: 2015–04
  2. By: Hartje, Rebecca; Hübler, Michael
    Abstract: While the worldwide spread of smartphones continues, developing countries have become important markets for these devices. Smartphones’ independence of landline networks qualifies them for communication and Internet access in rural areas of developing countries. Drawing upon rural Southeast Asian survey data, this paper provides probably the first empirical evidence for smartphones’ contribution to households’ income.
    Keywords: smartphones; mobile phones; technology diffusion; economic development; Southeast Asia
    JEL: O18 O33 O53 R20
    Date: 2015–03
  3. By: Checchi, Daniele (University of Milan); Rettore, Enrico (University of Padova); Girardi, Silvia (IRVAPP)
    Abstract: In this paper we present a counterfactual evaluation of the effect of ICT resources at school on student achievements conducted in Italy. In 2009 156 classes at 6th grade were endowed with additional resources earmarked for purchasing ICT equipments only. By selecting an equivalent number of classes in the same schools we are able to conduct an evaluation of the causal effect of ICT on student achievements, controlling for their initial level. Despite a significant financial investment (in the order of 1500 Euros per student over a three year period), results are very small: if we take the most encouraging results, the average improvement associated to the programme would be 3 test points, corresponding to 17% of a standard deviation. Even if it might be argued that our estimate represents a lower bound for the real effect, overall we conclude that the intervention has been far from being cost effective.
    Keywords: ICT, learning, randomised experiments
    JEL: I20 I28
    Date: 2015–04

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