nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2018‒07‒09
eight papers chosen by
Walter Frisch
Universität Wien

  1. Do digital information technologies help unemployed job seekers find a job? Evidence from the broadband internet expansion in Germany By Gürtzgen, Nicole; Nolte, André; Pohlan, Laura; van den Berg, Gerard J.
  2. Accelerating Digital Trade in Latin America and the Caribbean By Kati Suominen
  3. Cities and the Structure of Social Interactions: Evidence from Mobile Phone Data By Konstantin Buechel, Maximilian von Ehrlich
  4. Correlates of ICTS and employment in Sub-Saharan Africa By Safia Khan; Kezia Lilenstein; Morne Oosthuizen; Christopher Rooney
  5. Internet Rising, Prices Falling: Measuring Inflation in a World of E-Commerce By Austan D. Goolsbee; Peter J. Klenow
  6. Tele-Communications 2.0: The Age of the Internet By Vahagn Jerbashian; Anna Kochanova
  7. E-commerce Development and Entrepreneurship in the People’s Republic of China By Huang, Bihong; Shaban, Mohamed; Song, Quanyun; Wu, Yu
  8. The price for instrumentally valuable information By Roxane Bricet

  1. By: Gürtzgen, Nicole; Nolte, André; Pohlan, Laura; van den Berg, Gerard J.
    Abstract: This paper studies effects of the introduction of a new digital mass medium on reemployment of unemployed job seekers. We combine data on high-speed (broadband) internet availability at the local level with individual register data on the unemployed in Germany. We address endogeneity by exploiting technological peculiarities in the network that affected the roll-out of high-speed internet. The results show that high-speed internet improves reemployment rates after the first months of the unemployment spell. This is confirmed by complementary analysis with individual survey data suggesting that online job search leads to additional formal job interviews after a few months in unemployment.
    Keywords: unemployment,online job search,information frictions,matching technology,search channels
    JEL: J64 K42 H40 L96 C26
    Date: 2018
  2. By: Kati Suominen
    Abstract: The Internet roared to the scene in Latin America and it is transforming the way Latin Americans interact, shop, bank, and spend their time. The Internet is changing regional consumption patterns, the landscape of regional companies, and the region's economic prospects. Disruptive digital technologies riding on the web -cloud-based services, e-commerce, 3D printing, Internet of Things, and so on- are empowering LAC companies of all sizes to dramatically cut costs, improve customer service, and create brand new products and services. The region is also home to innovative digital companies run by intrepid entrepreneurs, some of whom have accessed significant investments from Silicon Valley and grown into some of the leading digital companies. The Internet, in short, has opened tremendous new opportunities for LAC economies to become more productive, expand opportunities for entrepreneurship, and drive inclusive economic growth.
    Keywords: E-Commerce, Export Diversification, Exports of Service, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, Startups, Integration & Trade, E-Commerce, Electronic Commerce
    JEL: O39
    Date: 2017–03
  3. By: Konstantin Buechel, Maximilian von Ehrlich
    Abstract: Social interactions are considered pivotal to urban agglomeration forces. This study employs a unique dataset on mobile phone calls to examine how social interactions differ across cities and peripheral areas. We first show that geographical distance is highly detrimental to interpersonal exchange. We then reveal that individuals residing in high-density locations do not benefit from larger social networks, but from a more efficient structure in terms of higher matching quality and lower clustering. These results are derived from two complementary approaches: Based on a link formation model, we examine how geographical distance, network overlap, and sociodemographic (dis)similarities impact the likelihood that two agents interact. We further decompose the effects from individual, location, and time specific determinants on micro-level network measures by exploiting information on mobile phone users who change their place of residence.
    Keywords: Social Interactions; Agglomeration Externalities; Network Analysis; Sorting
    JEL: R1 R23 Z13 D85
    Date: 2016–12
  4. By: Safia Khan; Kezia Lilenstein; Morne Oosthuizen; Christopher Rooney (University of Cape Town; Researcher)
    Abstract: The potential for Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) to influence development have been widely documented, however the impact of ICTs on the employment prospects of those in SSA have been poorly recorded, with most studies focused on specific localised contexts. This paper models the impact of ICTs on the employment outcomes of individuals in 12 African countries, taking into account the varying nature of self-employment compared to other types of third party employment. The paper finds a correlation between mobile phone ownership, the intensity of mobile phone use, and employment in a selection of countries and contexts. Internet use in 2012 is largely unrelated to the employment outcome in these countries. The impact of ICT use differs by geolocation, sex and age. Older people, most likely with more established prior networks, are more likely to have ICTs impact their employment outcome. ICTs are more likely to influence the employment outcome of males, and those in urban areas.
    Keywords: ICTs, Mobile Phones, Intensity of Mobile Use, Internet, Employment, Self Employment, Rural, Urban
    JEL: J64 N77 O3
    Date: 2017–03
  5. By: Austan D. Goolsbee; Peter J. Klenow
    Abstract: We use Adobe Analytics data on online transactions for millions of products in many different categories from 2014 to 2017 to shed light on how online inflation compares to overall inflation, and to gauge the magnitude of new product bias online. The Adobe data contain transaction prices and quantities purchased. We estimate that online inflation was about 1 percentage point lower than in the CPI for the same categories from 2014--2017. In addition, the rising variety of products sold online, implies roughly 2 percentage points lower inflation than in a matched model/CPI-style index.
    JEL: E31 O47
    Date: 2018–05
  6. By: Vahagn Jerbashian (Universitat de Barcelona, BEAT, and CERGE-EI); Anna Kochanova (Cardiff Business School)
    Abstract: Over the past few decades, the Internet has become the major tool for communication, greatly replacing the traditional telecommunication technologies. We use industry-level evidence from 21 European countries and the period 1997-2007 and identify the changing effects of traditional telecommunication technologies and the Internet on the functioning of markets. Specifically, we show that the effect of the traditional telecommunication technologies on competition in services and goods markets has dissipated and has become insignificant during this period. In contrast, the effect of the Internet has gained a significant momentum.
    Keywords: Telecommunications, The Internet, Product Market Competition.
    JEL: L16 O25 O33
    Date: 2018
  7. By: Huang, Bihong (Asian Development Bank Institute); Shaban, Mohamed (Asian Development Bank Institute); Song, Quanyun (Asian Development Bank Institute); Wu, Yu (Asian Development Bank Institute)
    Abstract: We utilize an e-commerce development indicator in tandem with big data to measure the variations of e-commerce development across counties in the People’s Republic of China and assess its impact on entrepreneurship in both rural and urban areas. We find that households living in counties with higher levels of e-commerce development are more likely to run their own businesses. Further study indicates that e-commerce development not only significantly increases the entry of new startups but also decreases the exit of incumbent businesses. We also find that e-commerce development induces sectoral change of household entrepreneurship. It promotes entrepreneurship in the manufacturing and wholesale sectors, but reduces the entrepreneurship in the retail, hotel, and catering sectors. We also show that e-commerce prosperity fuels entrepreneurship by alleviating the financial constraints and moderates the reliance of household entrepreneurship on social networks.
    Keywords: e-commerce development; big data; entrepreneurship
    JEL: L81
    Date: 2018–03–22
  8. By: Roxane Bricet (Université de Cergy-Pontoise, THEMA)
    Abstract: In this article, I propose an experimental design to measure the value of instrumental information in a model-free setup. In particular, this study provides operating instructions to test Blackwell’s ranking of informative structures under risk and under ambiguity. Drawing on Ellsberg’s two-color thought experiment, the subject faces three different types of choice situations: simple risk, compound risk and ambiguity. The original experiment is modified by enabling the agent to observe random draws with replacement so that he can learn about the composition of the urns. The proposed design allows to estimate the value of signals that differ in their informativeness and how it relates to ambiguity attitudes.
    Keywords: Value of Information, Ambiguity, Blackwell’s theorem, Reduction of Compound Lotteries, Ellsberg paradox, Experiment, Prince.
    JEL: C91 D81 D83
    Date: 2018

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