nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2021‒11‒29
six papers chosen by
Marek Giebel
Universität Dortmund

  1. Does IT Help? Information Technology in Banking and Entrepreneurship By Mr. Yannick Timmer; Mr. Nicola Pierri; Toni Ahnert; Sebastian Doerr
  2. Firm Size and the Task Content of Jobs: Evidence from 47 Countries By De Vera, Micole; Garcia-Brazales, Javier
  3. Spurring growth and closing gaps through digitalisation in a post-COVID world: Policies to LIFT all boats By Mauro Pisu; Christina von Rüden; Hyunjeong Hwang; Giuseppe Nicoletti
  4. Internet Access for Children’s Online Schooling during the COVID-19 Pandemic and Parental Mental Health By Kien, Le
  5. Keep It Simple: A Field Experiment on Information Sharing among Strangers By Batista, Catia; Fafchamps, Marcel; Vicente, Pedro C.
  6. Closing the Gender Profit Gap? By Batista, Catia; Sequeira, Sandra; Vicente, Pedro C.

  1. By: Mr. Yannick Timmer; Mr. Nicola Pierri; Toni Ahnert; Sebastian Doerr
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the importance of information technology (IT) in banking for entrepreneurship. To guide our empirical analysis, we build a parsimonious model of bank screening and lending that predicts that IT in banking can spur entrepreneurship by making it easier for startups to borrow against collateral. We provide empirical evidence that job creation by young firms is stronger in US counties that are more exposed to ITintensive banks. Consistent with a strengthened collateral lending channel for IT banks, entrepreneurship increases more in IT-exposed counties when house prices rise. In line with the model's implications, IT in banking increases startup activity without diminishing startup quality and it also weakens the importance of geographical distance between borrowers and lenders. These results suggest that banks' IT adoption can increase dynamism and productivity.
    Keywords: technology in banking, entrepreneurship, information technology, collateral, screening; banks' IT adoption; importance of information technology; IT in banking; startup activity; bank screening; Collateral; Self-employment; Employment; Job creation
    Date: 2021–08–06
  2. By: De Vera, Micole; Garcia-Brazales, Javier
    Abstract: Using a mix of household- and employer-based survey data from 47 countries, we provide novel evidence that workers in larger firms perform more non-routine analytical and interpersonal tasks, even within narrowly defined occupations. Moreover, workers in larger firms rely more on the use of information and communications technologies (ICT) to perform these tasks. We also document a 17% wage premium that workers in larger firms enjoy relative to their counterparts in smaller firms. We find evidence that the firm size gradient in the task content of jobs accounts for around 10% of the large firm wage premium.
    Keywords: Tasks,Occupations,Firm size,Cross-country evidence,Wage differential
    JEL: J24 J31 L25
    Date: 2021
  3. By: Mauro Pisu; Christina von Rüden; Hyunjeong Hwang; Giuseppe Nicoletti
    Abstract: The full potential of digital technologies remains unrealised and their benefits unequally shared because of insufficient investment in enabling intangible assets and communication networks within and across countries. The COVID-19 shock poses new challenges and opportunities. Drawing on past and ongoing OECD work, the paper proposes a multipronged policy approach to durably accelerate the diffusion and uptake of digital technologies across all layers of society, and share their benefits more widely. The building blocks of the proposed LIFT approach include: Lifelong learning for all to ensure everybody has the opportunity to acquire and upgrade the skills needed to thrive in a digital world; Intangibles finance for the knowledge economy to allow more firms, especially small ones, to increase intangible investment and seize the opportunities offered by the digital transformation; Framework market conditions for the digital age to upgrade policies to the digital age, especially in the areas of taxation, competition law and enforcement, digital security, firms’ entry and exit, and e-government; Technology access via digital infrastructure to facilitate access to communication networks and accelerate the take up of digital technologies and their international diffusion.
    Keywords: Compensation, Competition Policy, Education and Inequality, Firm Growth, Firm Performance, Innovation Policy, Skill Biased, SME, Technology Adoption, Technology and Competitiveness, Wages
    JEL: L25 L4 O32 O33 O38 I24 J3
    Date: 2021–11–26
  4. By: Kien, Le
    Abstract: Thе оutbrеаk оf thе соrоnаvirus disеаsе 2019 (COVID-19) саusing milliоns оf pеоplе tо bе infесtеd hаs pоsеd mаjоr publiс hеаlth аnd gоvеrnаnсе сhаllеngеs. This study еvаluаtеs thе еxtеnt tо whiсh thе unаvаilаbility оf intеrnеt fоr сhildrеn tо lеаrn оnlinе during thе pаndеmiс аffесts pаrеntаl psyсhоlоgiсаl wеllbеing. Wе find thаt pаrеnts hаving nо intеrnеt fоr thеir сhildrеn tо lеаrn оnlinе during tо thе pаndеmiс аrе 40.37, 47.22, 43.68, аnd 46.90 pеrсеntаgе pоints mоrе likеly tо fееl аnxiоus, wоrriеd, displеаsеd, аnd dеprеssеd еvеry dаy. Thе study саlls fоr thе еxpаnsiоn оf suppоrts fоr сhildrеn аnd fаmiliеs during thе pаndеmiс, еspесiаlly fоr disprоpоrtiоnаtеly аffесtеd соmmunitiеs.
    Keywords: COVID-19; Onlinе Sсhооl; Intеrnеt; Mеntаl Hеаlth
    JEL: I10 I12 I18
    Date: 2020
  5. By: Batista, Catia (Nova School of Business and Economics); Fafchamps, Marcel (Stanford University); Vicente, Pedro C. (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
    Abstract: SMS information campaigns are increasingly used for policy. We conduct a field experiment to study information sharing through mobile phone messages. Subjects are rural households in Mozambique who have access to mobile money. In the baseline intervention, subjects receive an SMS containing simple instructions on how to redeem a voucher for mobile money. They can share this non-rival information with other exogenously assigned subjects unknown to them. We find that few participants redeem the voucher. They nonetheless share it with others and many share information about the voucher they do not use themselves. Information is shared more when communication is anonymous and we find no evidence of more sharing with subjects who have similar characteristics. We introduce treatments to increase the cost of sending a message, shame those who do not send the voucher to others, or allow subjects to appropriate the value of information. All these treatments decrease information sharing. To encourage information diffusion among strangers, the best is to 'keep it simple'.
    Keywords: SMS information campaign, nudging, mobile money, anonymity, empathy, shared identity
    JEL: D83 D64 O33
    Date: 2021–10
  6. By: Batista, Catia (Nova School of Business and Economics); Sequeira, Sandra (London School of Economics); Vicente, Pedro C. (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
    Abstract: We examine the impact of providing access to mobile savings accounts and improving financial management skills on the performance of female-led microenterprises in Mozambique. We find evidence that both interventions can improve business performance but the effects are highly heterogeneous. Combining both types of support is associated with a large increase in both short and long-term firm profits and in financial security for the microentrepreneur. This allowed female-headed microenterprises, particularly those with a higher baseline level of profits, to close the gender profit gap in performance and skills relative to their male counterparts. The main drivers of improved business performance are improved financial management practices (bookkeeping), an increase in accessible savings, and reduced transfers to friends and relatives. For female entrepreneurs with intermediate levels of profits at baseline, even just providing access to mobile money accounts can increase long-term profits and for the most disadvantaged microentrepreneurs it can at least in-crease levels of financial security. Uncovering this heterogeneity in impact within different types of female-led microenterprises can help improve the targeting of these interventions in the future.
    Keywords: microenterprise development, management, gender, mobile money, financial literacy, economic development
    JEL: O15 O16 G53 J16
    Date: 2021–10

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