nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2021‒01‒25
thirteen papers chosen by
Marek Giebel
Universität Dortmund

  1. AI and Jobs: Evidence from Online Vacancies By Daron Acemoglu; David Autor; Jonathon Hazell; Pascual Restrepo
  2. Digital Capital and Superstar Firms By Prasanna Tambe; Lorin Hitt; Daniel Rock; Erik Brynjolfsson
  3. Accounting for Cloud Computing in the National Accounts By Andrew Baer; Kwangwon Lee; James Tebrake
  4. Does Online Search Improve the Match Quality of New Hires? By Gürtzgen, Nicole; Lochner, Benjamin; Pohlan, Laura; van den Berg, Gerard J.
  5. Promoting the diffusion of technology to boost productivity and well-being in Korea By Mathilde Pak
  6. Can older workers stay productive? The role of ICT skills and training By Jong-Wha Lee; Do Won Kwak; Eunbi Song
  7. Knowledge monitoring algorithm development for universities, using proctoring tools, for a group of students By Goncharenko, Lyudmila; Sybachin, Sergey; Khachaturov, Grigory
  8. Competition Reform and Household Welfare: A Microsimulation Analysis of the Telecommunication Sector in Ethiopia By Rodriguez Castelan, Carlos; Araar, Abdelkrim; Malásquez, Eduardo A.; Ochoa, Rogelio Granguillhome
  9. Telework before the COVID-19 pandemic: Trends and drivers of differences across the EU By Santo Milasi; Ignacio González-Vázquez; Enrique Fernández-Macías
  10. An unobserved components model of total factor productivity and the relative price of investment By Joshua C.C. Chan; Edouard Wemy
  12. International Trade and Corporate Market Power By Jesus R Gonzalez-Garcia; Yuanchen Yang

  1. By: Daron Acemoglu; David Autor; Jonathon Hazell; Pascual Restrepo
    Abstract: We study the impact of AI on labor markets, using establishment level data on vacancies with detailed occupational information comprising the near-universe of online vacancies in the US from 2010 onwards. We classify establishments as "AI exposed" when their workers engage in tasks that are compatible with current AI capabilities. We document rapid growth in AI related vacancies over 2010-2018 that is not limited to the Professional and Business Services and Information Technology sectors and is significantly greater in AI-exposed establishments. AI-exposed establishments are differentially eliminating vacancy postings that list a range of previously-posted skills while simultaneously posting skill requirements that were not previously listed. Establishment-level estimates suggest that AI-exposed establishments are reducing hiring in non-AI positions as they expand AI hiring. However, we find no discernible relationship between AI exposure and employment or wage growth at the occupation or industry level, implying that AI is currently substituting for humans in a subset of tasks but it is not yet having detectable aggregate labor market consequences.
    JEL: J23 O33
    Date: 2020–12
  2. By: Prasanna Tambe; Lorin Hitt; Daniel Rock; Erik Brynjolfsson
    Abstract: General purpose technologies like information technology typically require complementary firm-specific investments to create value. These complementary investments produce a form of capital, which is typically intangible and which we call digital capital. We create an extended firm-level panel on IT labor investments (1990-2016) using data from LinkedIn. We then apply Hall’s Quantity Revelation Theorem to compute both prices and quantities of digital capital over recent decades. We find that 1) digital capital prices vary significantly over time, peaking around the dot-com boom in 2000, 2) significant digital capital quantities have accumulated since the 1990s, with digital capital accounting for at least 25% of firms’ assets by the end of our panel, 3) that digital capital has disproportionately accumulated in a small subset of “superstar” firms and its concentration is much greater than the concentration of other assets, and 4) that digital capital accumulation predicts firm-level productivity about three years in the future.
    JEL: D24 D25 M21 O32 O33
    Date: 2020–12
  3. By: Andrew Baer; Kwangwon Lee; James Tebrake
    Abstract: Digitalization and the innovative use of digital technologies is changing the way we work, learn, communicate, buy and sell products. One emerging digital technology of growing importance is cloud computing. More and more businesses, governments and households are purchasing hardware and software services from a small number of large cloud computing providers. This change is having an impact on how macroeconomic data are compiled and how they are interpreted by users. Specifically, this is changing the information and communication technology (ICT) investment pattern from one where ICT investment was diversified across many industries to a more concentrated investment pattern. Additionally, this is having an impact on cross-border flows of commercial services since the cloud service provider does not need to be located in the same economic territory as the purchaser of cloud services. This paper will outline some of the methodological and compilation challenges facing statisticians and analysts, provide some tools that can be used to overcome these challenges and highlight some of the implications these changes are having on the way users of national accounts data look at investment and trade in commercial services.
    Keywords: Cloud computing;Imports;Service exports;Information technology in revenue administration;Employee contributions;WP,cloud computing service,cloud service,IT service,cloud computing firm,Cloud storage service,computer processing firm,computer services export,delivery model,sector use cloud computing service,software service,use cloud computing service
    Date: 2020–07–17
  4. By: Gürtzgen, Nicole (Institute for Employment Research (IAB), Nuremberg); Lochner, Benjamin (University of Erlangen-Nuremberg); Pohlan, Laura (ZEW Mannheim and IAB Nuremberg); van den Berg, Gerard J. (University of Bristol)
    Abstract: This paper studies the effects of the high-speed internet expansion on the match quality of new hires. We combine data on internet availability at the local level with German individual register and vacancy data. Results show that internet availability has no major impact on the stability of new matches and their wages. We confirm these findings using vacancy data, by explicitly comparing match outcomes of online and non-online recruits. Further results show that online recruiting not only raises the number of applicants and the share of unsuitable candidates per vacancy, but also induces employers to post more vacancies.
    Keywords: matching, internet, informational friction, recruiting channel, vacancy, wage, job duration
    JEL: J64 H40 L96 C26
    Date: 2021–01
  5. By: Mathilde Pak
    Abstract: Korea is a top player in emerging digital technologies, with an outstanding digital infrastructure and a dynamic ICT sector. The COVID-19 outbreak highlighted the importance of digitalisation to contain the spread of the virus, by allowing quick testing and tracing of infected people, and spurred the development of the "untact economy". Remote access both facilitated physical distancing and mitigated the economic impact of the crisis by enabling more people to continue working. Digital technologies offer opportunities to raise firms’ productivity and the population’s well-being. However, wide productivity gaps between large firms and SMEs and between manufacturing and services weigh on economy-wide productivity, which is far below the OECD average. A wide skills gap between youth and older generations prevents an increasing share of the population from taking part in and enjoying the benefits from a digitalised economy. This paper suggests ways to narrow the digital divide by enhancing the diffusion of digital technologies among firms and among individuals. Increased participation in quality ICT education and training for students, teachers, SME workers and older people is key to address the lack of adequate skills and awareness of digital benefits or dangers (online security, cyberbullying, addiction). Promoting innovation networks between SMEs, academia and large firms through vouchers or platforms can support SMEs’ R&D and commercialisation of innovative goods and services. Waiving stringent regulations through regulatory sandboxes can help identify and alter regulations that hinder the adoption and diffusion of digital technologies.
    Keywords: COVID-19, digital divide, Korea, productivity, regulatory sandboxes, SMEs, well-being
    JEL: I31 J24 L25 L51 O3
    Date: 2021–01–21
  6. By: Jong-Wha Lee; Do Won Kwak; Eunbi Song
    Abstract: This paper quantitatively examines the effects of aging on labor productivity using individual worker data in Korea. We find that attainment of information and communications technology (ICT) skills and participation in job-related training can help older workers stay productive. The estimation results present that ICT skills attainment has a positive effect on the wages of the older workers aged 50–64 with a high level of education or in a skill-intensive occupation. Job training also has a significant positive effect on the wages of older workers. Even compared to younger workers, older well-educated workers can be more productive through higher ICT skills attainment and job-training participation. The evidence suggests that a productivity decrease in line with the aging process can be mitigated by training aging workers to equip themselves with ICT skills.
    Keywords: aging, education, information and communications technology, productivity, skill, training
    JEL: J14 J24 J31 O47
    Date: 2021–01
  7. By: Goncharenko, Lyudmila; Sybachin, Sergey; Khachaturov, Grigory
    Abstract: This article is devoted to the issues associated with the organization and implementation of a reliable monitoring of students' knowledge in a higher education institution in the context of a challenging epidemiological situation in the world and a forced full-scale educational process transfer to an electronic implementation format. In early 2020, higher education institutions were not ready to switch over to a distance work format. Educational organizations encountered a huge list of problems affecting literally every single element of the educational process. The most strongly this transition affected the students' knowledge monitoring process. At that time, universities had neither regulatory, nor methodological information base that could become a basis for developing individual approaches to solving the problem of knowledge monitoring process organization, using information technologies; the experience in arranging training sessions, accumulated by institutions over the past six months, gives the advantage. However, it’s important to understand that it’s impossible to control students' knowledge en-masse in approximately the same time interval without appropriate software and an established performance algorithm & implementation procedure.
    Keywords: distance learning, higher education institutions, knowledge monitoring, algorithm
    JEL: A22 O33
    Date: 2020–11–20
  8. By: Rodriguez Castelan, Carlos (World Bank); Araar, Abdelkrim (Université Laval); Malásquez, Eduardo A. (World Bank); Ochoa, Rogelio Granguillhome (World Bank)
    Abstract: This paper presents a novel method for estimating the likely welfare effects of competition reforms for both current and new consumers. Using household budget survey data for 2015/16 for Ethiopia and assuming a reform scenario that dilutes the market share of the state-owned monopoly to 45 percent, the model predicts a 25.3 percent reduction in the price of mobile services and an increase of 4.6 million new users. This reform would generate a welfare gain of 1.37 percent among all consumers. Poverty rates are expected to decline by 0.31 percentage points, driven by a reduction of 0.22 percentage points for current consumers and 0.09 percentage points among new users. Inequality would increase by 0.23 Gini points since better off consumers are more likely to reap the benefits of greater competition. This method represents a powerful tool for supporting the analysis of competition reforms in developing countries, particularly in sectors known for excluding significant segments of the population due to high consumer prices.
    Keywords: competition reform, ICT, welfare effects, simulations, Ethiopia
    JEL: C15 D40 D60 I32 L86 N77
    Date: 2021–01
  9. By: Santo Milasi; Ignacio González-Vázquez; Enrique Fernández-Macías
    Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the trends and differences in the prevalence of telework across EU countries, sectors and occupations before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Descriptive evidence shows that before the outbreak telework was more widespread in ICT- and knowledge-intensive sectors, and generally for high-skilled workers, although with big differences across EU countries. In fact, as shown in this paper, the prevalence of telework varied considerably across countries even within the same sector and occupational group. This suggests that, beyond differences in the industrial and occupational structure of employment, other factors, notably related to differences in organisation and management cultures, contribute to explaining the varying prevalence of telework in the EU. As a result of the outbreak-induced requirements to work from home, differences in telework uptake across countries, sectors and job profiles have likely narrowed in recent months. Yet, if past trends are a guide, the ability to further scale up telework in the future without hampering productivity may remain unevenly distributed in the EU.
    Keywords: covid-19, remote work, teleworking, work from home
    JEL: J01 J20
    Date: 2021–01–22
  10. By: Joshua C.C. Chan; Edouard Wemy
    Abstract: This paper applies the common stochastic trends representation approach to the time series of total factor productivity and the relative price of investment to investigate the relationship between neutral technology and investment-specific technology. The permanent and transitory movements in both series are estimated efficiently via MCMC methods using band matrix algorithms. The results indicate that total factor productivity and the relative price of investment are, each, well-represented by an integrated process of order one. In addition, their time series share a common trend component that we interpret as reflecting changes in General Purpose Technology. These results suggest that (1) the traditional view of assuming that neutral technology and investment-specific technology follow independent processes is not supported by the features of the time series and (2) advances in information and communication technologies are general purpose technological progress that drive the trend in aggregate TFP in the United States.
    Keywords: Business cycles, Investment-specific technological change, Total Factor Productivity, Unobserved Components Model
    JEL: E22 E32 C32
    Date: 2020–12
  11. By: Wioleta Kucharska (Gdansk University of Technology, Gdansk, Poland); G. Scott Erickson (Ithaca College, Ithaca, NY, USA)
    Abstract: This study measures the relationship between tacit knowledge and innovation in the Polish and US information technology (IT) industries. Large samples were obtained, allowing quantitative modeling not possible in many tacit knowledge studies focused on more qualitative analysis. Conceptually, the study identifies the potential sources of tacit knowledge (learning-by-doing and/or learning-by-interaction), individual tacit knowledge development leading to a willingness to share, and the consequent correlation to process and/or product/service innovation. The important role of critical thinking as a control variable in tacit knowledge development in individuals is also identified as is the connection of process innovation as a mediator between tacit knowledge sharing and product/service innovation. The model is supported across both samples though with interesting differences across countries, particularly in sources of tacit knowledge (more learn-by-doing in the US), the link between awareness and sharing (stronger in US), and innovation (process as a full mediator in Poland, complementary in the US). The main theoretical contribution is empirical support for tacit knowledge's role in innovation, including the step-by-step details of how everything connects as well as details on how the model can differ by national context. The managerial implications include the care that must be taken to evaluate national circumstances and their potential impact on a firm's management of tacit knowledge.
    Keywords: Tacit knowledge, knowledge awareness, knowledge sharing, innovation, IT industry, Poland, USA
    Date: 2021–01
  12. By: Jesus R Gonzalez-Garcia; Yuanchen Yang
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of international trade on corporate market power in emerging market economies and developing countries, with a special focus on sub-Saharan Africa. The analysis is based on a large firm-level dataset, tariff data by sector and agreggate indicators of international trade for the period 2000-17. Greater trade liberalization and trade integration are associated with significant declines in market power, with the effect being more pronounced for firms in the manufacturing and ICT sectors, private sector firms, and firms with higher initial markups. Firms in sub-Saharan Africa tend to experience signficantly lower markups after allowing greater trade integration. The effects of trade liberalization on market power materializes over time, and there are significant complementarities between trade reforms and real sector reforms.
    Keywords: Trade liberalization;Tariffs;Trade barriers;Structural reforms;Imports;WP,market power,import penetration
    Date: 2020–07–17
  13. By: Wioleta Kucharska (Gdansk University of Technology, Gdansk, Poland)
    Abstract: In the knowledge economy era, knowledge production and dissemination are of key interest to individuals, organizations, and economies. Tacit knowledge results from experience, leading to innovation. The learning culture can facilitate the transformation of errors into experiences. This study explores whether mistake acceptance facilitates tacit knowledge awareness and sharing in the information technology, healthcare, and construction industries in Poland and the United States. The findings show the influence of mistake acceptance on knowledge production and the differences between countries and industries. The US showed a higher level of mistake acceptance, which was similar across the three industries, than did Poland, which showed differences between sectors. In general, the higher the acceptance of mistakes, the greater the effect of tacit knowledge awareness on sharing. This study shows that there is no knowledge production without learning and no learning without mistake acceptance.
    Keywords: Knowledge production, Tacit knowledge awareness, Tacit knowledge sharing, Learning culture, Mistake acceptance, Error management
    Date: 2021–01

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