nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2021‒10‒18
seven papers chosen by
Marek Giebel
Universität Dortmund

  1. Addressing the Severity and Intensity of Poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa: How Relevant is the ICT and Financial Development Pathway? By Isaac K. Ofori; Mark K. Armah; Francis Taale; Pamela E. Ofori
  2. An empirical analysis of human trafficking in an era of globalization By Malah, Yselle; Asongu, Simplice
  3. Toward Cleaner Production: Can Mobile Phone Technology Help Reduce Inorganic Fertilizer Application? Evidence Using a National Level Dataset By Nawab Khan; Ram L. Ray; Hazem S. Kassem; Muhammad Ihtisham; Abdullah; Simplice Asongu; Stephen Ansah; Shemei Zhang
  4. Mobile technology supply factors and mobile money innovation: Thresholds for complementary policies By Asongu, Simplice; Odhiambo, Nicholas
  5. Addressing the Challenges of Taxation of the Digital Economy: Lessons for African Countries By Rukundo, Solomon
  6. An Empirical Analysis of how Internet Access Influences Public Opinion towards Undocumented Immigrants and Unaccompanied Children By Muhammad Hassan Bin Afzal
  7. How High (Low) are the Possibilities of Teleworking in Mexico? By Gustavo Leyva; Israel Mora

  1. By: Isaac K. Ofori (University of Insubria, Varese, Italy); Mark K. Armah (University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana); Francis Taale (University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana); Pamela E. Ofori (University of Insubria, Varese, Italy)
    Abstract: The study examines the effectiveness of financial development, financial access, and ICT diffusion in reducing the severity and intensity of poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Using data from the World Bank’s World Development Indicators, and the Global Consumption and Income Project (1980–2019), we provide evidence robust to several specifications from the dynamic system GMM and the panel corrected standard errors estimation techniques to show that, compared to financial access, ICT usage, and ICT access, ICT skills is remarkable in reducing both the severity and intensity of poverty. The results further unveil that, though ICT skills reduce the intensity and severity of poverty in SSA, the effect is more pronounced in the presence of enhanced financial development and financial access. Policy recommendations are provided in line with the region’s green growth agenda and the rise in technological hubs of the region.
    Keywords: Financial Access, Financial Development, ICT, Inequality, Poverty, Africa
    JEL: C33 D31 F63 I3 O33
    Date: 2021–01
  2. By: Malah, Yselle; Asongu, Simplice
    Abstract: The paper explores the dark side of economic openness by examining empirically the nexus between the globalization process and human trafficking. Specifically, it is about showing in a global perspective how the growing process of free movement of people, goods, capital, services and information technology make the globe a connected web of activity for the sale and exploitation of human beings. After discussing some transmission channels through which globalization could increase this practice based on the lessons from the literature, an empirical analysis is done by employing OLS and Probit regressions on a cross-sectional model covering 130 countries worldwide. Findings, robust to the consideration of the sub-regional specificities and controlling for social, cultural and historical factors, suggest that globalization, particularly financial and cultural, favors human trafficking. In the light of these results, some policy recommendations are discussed.
    Keywords: globalization, human trafficking, cross section model
    JEL: C21 F53
    Date: 2021–01
  3. By: Nawab Khan (Sichuan Agricultural University,Sichuan, China); Ram L. Ray (Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, USA); Hazem S. Kassem (King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia); Muhammad Ihtisham (Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China); Abdullah (PMAS-Arid Agriculture University, Pakistan); Simplice Asongu (Yaoundé, Cameroon); Stephen Ansah (Sichuan Agricultural University, China); Shemei Zhang (Sichuan Agricultural University, China)
    Abstract: Increasing agricultural production and optimizing inorganic fertilizer (IF) use are imperative for agricultural and environmental sustainability. Mobile phone usage (MPU) has the potential to reduce IF application while ensuring environmental and agricultural sustainability goals. The main objectives of this study were to assess MPU, mobile phone promotion policy, and whether the mediation role of human capital can help reduce IF use. This study used baseline regression analysis and propensity score matching, difference-in-differences (PSM-DID) to assess the impact of MPU on IF usage. However, the two-stage instrumental variables method (IVM) was used to study the effects of mobile phone promotion policy on IF usage. This study used a national dataset from 7,987 rural households in Afghanistan to investigate the impacts of MPU and associated promotion policies on IF application. The baseline regression outcomes showed that the MPU significantly reduced IF usage. The evaluation mechanism revealed that mobile phones help reduce IF application by improving the human capital of farmers. Besides, evidence from the DID technique showed that mobile phone promotion policies lowered IF application. These results remained robust after applying the PSM-DID method and two-stage IVM to control endogenous decisions of rural households. This study results imply that enhancing the accessibility of wideband in remote areas, promoting MPU, and increasing investment in information communication technologies (ICTs) infrastructure can help decrease the IF application in agriculture. Thus, the government should invest in remote areas to facilitate access to ICTs, such as having a telephone and access to a cellular and internet network to provide an environment and facility to apply IF effectively. Further, particular policy support must focus on how vulnerable populations access the internet and mobile phone technologies.
    Keywords: mobile phone usage; propensity score matching; difference-in-difference; inorganic fertilizer usage; human capital; sustainable development; Afghanistan
    Date: 2021–01
  4. By: Asongu, Simplice; Odhiambo, Nicholas
    Abstract: This study complements the extant literature by assessing how enhancing supply factors of mobile technologies affect mobile money innovations for financial inclusion in developing countries. The mobile money innovation outcome variables are: mobile money accounts, the mobile phone used to send money and the mobile phone used to receive money. The mobile technology supply factors are: unique mobile subscription rate, mobile connectivity performance, mobile connectivity coverage and telecommunications (telecom) sector regulation. The empirical evidence is based on quadratic Tobit regressions and the following findings are established. There are Kuznets or inverted shaped nexuses between three of the four supply factors and mobile money innovations from which thresholds for complementary policies are provided as follows: (i) Unique adults’ mobile subscription rates of 128.500%, 121.500% and 77.750% for mobile money accounts, the mobile used to send money and the mobile used to receive money, respectively; (ii) the average share of the population covered by 2G, 3G and 4G mobile data networks of 61.250% and 51.833% for the mobile used to send money and the mobile used to receive money, respectively; and (iii) a telecom sector regulation index of 0.409, 0.283 and 0.283 for mobile money accounts, the mobile phone used to send money and the mobile phone used to receive money, respectively. Some complementary policies are discussed, because at the attendant thresholds, the engaged supply factors of mobile money technologies become necessary, but not sufficient conditions of mobile money innovations for financial inclusion.
    Keywords: Mobile money; technology diffusion; financial inclusion; inclusive innovation
    JEL: D10 D14 D31 D60 O30
    Date: 2021–01
  5. By: Rukundo, Solomon
    Abstract: The rapid growth of the digital economy in many African countries has led to concerns about whether their tax regimes are equipped to deal with this new phenomenon. The shift from a traditional bricks and mortar commercial environment to one that is electronic and information-based poses serious and substantial challenges to traditional tax regimes. African revenue authorities face the daunting task of protecting their revenue base without hindering either the development and use of new technologies or the involvement of the business community in the emerging e-market place. This paper examines legislative and policy approaches to taxing the digital economy adopted by different jurisdictions around the world and the lessons that African countries can draw from these experiences. The paper argues that African countries should participate in the multilateral discussions on the reform of international taxation needed to deal with the challenges of the digital economy. However, they must also acknowledge that their challenges are different from those of developed countries and therefore their final solutions will have to be uniquely African.
    Keywords: Economic Development, Finance, Governance,
    Date: 2020
  6. By: Muhammad Hassan Bin Afzal
    Abstract: This research adds to the expanding field of data-driven analysis, scientific modeling, and forecasting on the impact of having access to the Internet and IoT on the general US population regarding immigrants and immigration policies. More specifically, this research focuses on the public opinion of undocumented immigrants in the United States and having access to the Internet in their local settings. The term Undocumented Immigrants refers to those who live in the United States without legal papers, documents, or visas. Undocumented immigrants may have come into the country unlawfully or with valid documentation, but their legal status has expired. Using the 2020 American National Election Studies (ANES) time series dataset, I investigated the relationship between internet access (A2I) and public perception of undocumented immigrants. According to my research and analysis, increasing internet access among non-Hispanic whites with at least a bachelors degree with an annual household income of less than 99K is more likely to oppose the deportation of undocumented immigrants and separating unaccompanied children from their families in borderland areas. The individuals with substantial Republican political ideology exhibit significantly lower opposing effects in deporting undocumented immigrants or separating unaccompanied children from their families. The evidence from multiple statistical models is resilient to a variety of factors. The findings show that increased internet access may improve undocumented immigrants social integration and acceptability. During health emergencies, it may be especially beneficial to make them feel safe, included, and supported in their local settings.
    Date: 2021–09
  7. By: Gustavo Leyva; Israel Mora
    Abstract: We estimate that about 10.6 percent of jobs could be done from home in Mexico, using 468 4-digit SINCO occupations and employment data in 2019. This is roughly half the estimate reported by Dingel and Neiman (2020) using teleworking criteria devised for the U.S. labor market. Owing to the peculiarities of the Mexican labor market, we report results by type of contract (formal and informal), geographical area, and gender. We validate our teleworking measure by exploiting the cross-state variation of real GDP per worker, the share of services in employment, and internet and computer access within the household. We find that the gap in teleworking possibilities favorable to females has its root in the disparate occupation structures across gender. During the pandemic, the decline in the share of non-telework jobs in females has been thrice as much as that in males.
    JEL: J16 J46 J81
    Date: 2021–09

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