nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2017‒11‒19
five papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
Universität Wien

  1. ICT, Conflicts in Financial Intermediation and Financial Access: Evidence of Synergy and Threshold Effects By Simplice Asongu; Paul Acha-Anyi
  2. Economic effects of recent social and technological developments By Bartholomae, Florian W.
  3. Internet and Politics: Evidence from U.K. Local Elections and Local Government Policies By Alessandro Gavazza; Mattia Nardotto; Tommaso M. Valletti
  4. Austria’s digital transition: The diffusion challenge By Rauf Gönenç; Béatrice Guérard
  5. What role for social sciences in innovation?: Re-assessing how scientific disciplines contribute to different industries By Caroline Paunov; Sandra Planes-Satorra; Tadanori Moriguchi

  1. By: Simplice Asongu (Yaoundé/Cameroun); Paul Acha-Anyi (Pretoria, South Africa)
    Abstract: In this study we investigate the role of information and communication technology (ICT) in conflicts of financial intermediation for financial access. The empirical evidence is based on contemporary (or current values) and non-contemporary (or lagged by a year) quantile regressions in 53 African countries for the period 2004-2011. The main findings are: First, the net effect of ICT in formalization for financial activity in the banking system is consistently beneficial with positive thresholds. The fact that corresponding, unconditional and conditional effects are persistently positive is evidence of synergy or complementary effects. Second, the net effect of ICT in financial informalization for financial activity in the financial system is negative with a consistent negative threshold. Hence, the positive (negative) complementarity of ICT and financial formalization (informalization) is an increasing (decreasing) function of financial activity. Policy measures on how to leverage the synergy or complementarity between ICT and financial formalization in order to enhance financial access are discussed.
    Keywords: Allocation efficiency; financial sector development; ICT
    JEL: G20 G29 L96 O40 O55
    Date: 2017–01
  2. By: Bartholomae, Florian W.
    Abstract: This paper summarizes and connects the main findings of the habilitation project. The important social developments analyzed, result from the demographic change that many economies will face in the future. Especially on the regional level, problems arise due to increasing disparities in population. This challenges the comprehensive pro-vision of public services such as health care or basic infrastructure. Therefore, new strategies have to be implemented and previous structures have to be adapted. In particular, as also many cities, which have always been agglomeration areas of economic activity, face demographic and/or economic problems, appropriate proactive strategies must be developed to ensure future prosperity. The most predominant recent technological development is the emergence and comprehensive availability of the Internet. This has led to new business opportunities but also new threats for economic activity. One particular online market comprises online games. In this market, due to the virtuality on the one hand and the importance of net-work externalities on the other hand, challenges for the assignment of property rights of virtual objects and optimal pricing strategies arise that have to considered. In the context of B2B, and also B2C, cloud computing becomes more and more important, however, this service is threatened by cybercriminals that force access into the cloud. Thus, the provider must develop strategies to prevent damage for his customers and the economy. All in all, overall analysis shows that only cooperation of all relevant (economic) stakeholders can help to overcome challenges of social and technological developments.
    JEL: D9 H7 K4 L1 L86 O1 O3 R1
    Date: 2017
  3. By: Alessandro Gavazza; Mattia Nardotto; Tommaso M. Valletti
    Abstract: We empirically study the effects of broadband internet diffusion on local election outcomes and on local government policies using rich data from the U.K. Our analysis suggests that the internet has displaced other media with greater news content (i.e., radio and newspapers), thereby decreasing voter turnout, most notably among less-educated and younger individuals. In turn, we find suggestive evidence that local government expenditures and taxes are lower in areas with greater broadband diffusion, particularly expenditures targeted at less-educated voters. Our findings are consistent with the idea that voters’ information plays a key role in determining electoral participation, government policies and government size.
    JEL: D72
    Date: 2017
  4. By: Rauf Gönenç (OECD); Béatrice Guérard (OECD)
    Abstract: Austria’s transition to a digital economy and society is slower than in other high-income small open European economies. The rate and pace of utilisation of eight main ICT applications shows that Austrian firms follow peer country counterparts with a gap, which has widened in most areas in recent years. Two dynamics drive digital transitions and Austria has room for progress in both of them. First, the potential for digitalisation in all firms, and especially in the smaller ones (where gaps are largest) should be freed-up by upgrading the full range of ICT-generic, ICT-specific and ICT-complementary skills. Second, Austria needs to make its business environment more conducive to firm entry and exit. The rate of entry of new firms and their growth are crucial for the diffusion of new business models and ICT innovations but fall behind peer countries. The adoption of ICT innovations by households also follows a staggered path: young and highly educated Austrians adopt ICT applications in similar ways to their counterparts in peer countries, while middle and older age cohorts display noticeable gaps. This calls for policies to help lagging groups become more acquainted with innovations. A whole-of-government approach, including large-scale utilisation of e-government applications in enterprises and households, should help to embrace change and facilitate the flourishing of innovative businesses, work practices and lifestyles throughout Austria. This Working Paper relates to the 2017 OECD Economic Survey of Austria ( y-austria.htm)
    Keywords: diffusion of innovations, digitalisation, information technologies, technological innovation
    JEL: D24 L60 L81 L96 M15 O14 O32 O33 O38
    Date: 2017–11–20
  5. By: Caroline Paunov (OECD); Sandra Planes-Satorra (OECD); Tadanori Moriguchi (Japan Patent Office)
    Abstract: Knowledge transfer between industry and science is fundamental to innovation. There are important differences across scientific disciplines and sectors of activity in that, for instance, the financial and pharmaceutical sectors have different demands for science inputs. This paper reviews the data sources and associated methodologies available to measure different types of science-industry interaction. It applies these insights to re-assess the contributions of social sciences to industry and the disciplinary needs of the ICT sector. The paper finds that commonly used methodologies fail to shed light on a number of important industry-science interaction channels, and introduce biases in assessing connections. Using new evidence from labour force and university graduate surveys can help to some extent. The paper shows how these additional data allow to better capture the contributions of social scientists and the complexity of disciplinary demands of the digital economy. However, new data sources and methods should be further explored.
    Keywords: academic disciplines, industry sectors, information and communication technologies (ICT), innovation, knowledge transfer, review of data sources and associated methodologies, Science-industry linkages, social sciences
    JEL: I23 O31 O33
    Date: 2017–11–17

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