nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2022‒08‒22
six papers chosen by
Marek Giebel
Universität Dortmund

  1. The Digital Economy and Productivity By David M. Byrne
  2. The Digital Transition for a Sustainable Mobility Regime? A Long-Run Perspective. By Ralph Hippe; Damien Demailly; Claude Diebolt
  3. Technology, resources and geography in a paradigm shift: the case of critical and conflict materials in ICTs By Diemer, Andreas; Iammarino, Simona; Perkins, Richard; Gros, Axel
  4. The EU-US Trade and Technology Council: Developments, Key Issues and Policy Options By Paul J. J. Welfens; David Hanrahan
  5. ICT Expansion, Innovation Dynamics in the EU and Climate Neutrality-related Policy Options By Paul J. J. Welfens; Tian Xiong; David Hanrahan
  6. The value of data in digital-based business models: Measurement and economic policy implications By Carol Corrado; Jonathan Haskel; Massimiliano Iommi; Cecilia Jona-Lasinio

  1. By: David M. Byrne
    Abstract: After reviewing the state of digitalization---the use of digital information technology (IT) throughout the economy---we consider the slippery concept of a distinct digital economy and efforts to record it in national accounts. We then anchor the digital economy in a growth accounting framework, augmenting the conventional measure of the IT contribution to productivity---innovation in the production of IT capital plus labor-saving use of IT throughout the economy---with the contribution from the digital platforms that help users navigate the sprawling information landscape. We discuss the difficult measurement issues that thwart a full accounting of the scope and productivity of the digital economy remain. These include quantifying the intangible assets created by platforms and their users, measuring the consumption of intangible services provided by platforms---often provided for free---and identifying platforms within the existing statistical system, which does not treat their activity as a distinct industry.
    Keywords: Digital economy; Digitalization
    JEL: E31 E22 E01 L63
    Date: 2022–06–17
  2. By: Ralph Hippe; Damien Demailly; Claude Diebolt
    Abstract: New Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have been praised to massively transform our economies, and to be the foundation of a new and more sustainable mobility regime. But will they? And if so, how could ICTs help building it? While the newest ICTs such as the internet are in some ways unique, in other respects they have historical predecessors (such as the telegraph and the telephone) that are worth considering. This paper reviews the literature and shows that ‘older’ ICTs have transformed our mobility regime in significant and unpredictable ways. In particular, they have supported and made more efficient new transport modes, contributed to the geographical concentration and dispersion trends of economic activities and changed how and how much we connect to our families and friends. ICTs can help building more sustainable mobility e.g., by making transport more efficient or reducing mobility demand in some cases, but overall the interactions between mobility and ICTs turn out to be important, diverse and complex.
    Keywords: Green deal, ICT, Digital transition, Mobility, Technological transformation, Innovation.
    JEL: N10 N90 O14 O18 O33 R41 R42
    Date: 2022
  3. By: Diemer, Andreas; Iammarino, Simona; Perkins, Richard; Gros, Axel
    Abstract: Critical and conflict materials (CCMs) are providing an important material infrastructure for recent technological shifts. Relying on text analysis of US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) data, this exploratory study examines the technological and geographical linkages between technological paradigms and selected CCMs. Our descriptive analysis finds evidence of a clear association between information and communication technologies (ICTs) and CCM intensity over time, and of a striking resource–technology divide between value-creating and -extracting activities across the Global North and the Global South and their regions. The paper emphasizes the need for a more critical, spatially sensitive approach to studying resource-based technological change to expose its uneven development consequences.
    Keywords: critical and conflict materials; paradigm shift; technological demand; geography of technology; geography of resource supply; STICERD; LSE; 2019-2020; Undergraduate Research Fellowship from the Department of Geography & Environment; LSE; FORTE; 2016-07099; T&F deal
    JEL: O30 Q34 Q55 R11
    Date: 2022–04–15
  4. By: Paul J. J. Welfens (Europäisches Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen (EIIW)); David Hanrahan (Europäisches Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen (EIIW))
    Abstract: Following the failure of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership project, the European Union and the United States have considered options on how to organize transatlantic cooperation within what may be considered an adequate framework – a different approach has been agreed in the Trade and Technology Council (TTC). Such initiatives are fundamental pillars of transatlantic economic integration. The US and the EU have indeed started a new initiative which is based on ten policy fields which have potential for enhanced cooperation; there is a triple focus, namely on common values, on options for better joint standard-setting and on cooperating in new fields, e.g. the digitalized economy. With the Russo-Ukraine War, the relevance of more transatlantic cooperation has been reinforced, not least since this military conflict indirectly raises the issue of to what extent economic relations between the West and China could also deteriorate in the medium term. While the ten areas considered by the EU and US within the framework of the TTC indeed stand for crucial fields, one should not overlook that three additional fields have been largely neglected so far: (i) ICT market integration and the transatlantic integration of internet-based markets, respectively; (ii) challenges for transatlantic cooperation – indeed win-win opportunities – in the field of climate-stabilizing innovations; and (iii) the crucial role of reducing barriers to transatlantic foreign direct investment. The latter have been shown to be of critical relevance for output dynamics and the current account-Gross Domestic Product ratio, namely in the FDI-enhanced DSGE macro model of Roeger/Welfens (2021) which allows in a new way to consider, for example, the national and international effects of product innovations and process innovations. It should also be emphasized that the international spillover effects of ICT innovations imply that there is a broader need for transatlantic policy cooperation which, paradoxically, also requires more cooperation between national governments of EU countries and the governments of US states. As regards enhanced transatlantic economic policy cooperation, new initiatives here should not mistakenly be considered a substitute for long-term cooperation in the fora of international organizations.
    Keywords: EU, US, Trade, Innovation, Trade and Technology Council, ICT, Win-Win, Innovation Policy, Transatlantic Cooperation
    JEL: F02 F13 F55 F69 O38
    Date: 2022–05
  5. By: Paul J. J. Welfens (Europäisches Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen (EIIW)); Tian Xiong (Europäisches Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen (EIIW)); David Hanrahan (Europäisches Institut für Internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen (EIIW))
    Abstract: Climate change continues to challenge the global economy; particularly in industrialized countries, governments are increasingly coming under pressure to develop and implement adequate climate protection and innovation policies, as well as to co-operate in aligning them. At the same time, firms are also becoming more active in “greening†, by innovating in terms of greener products and processes in order to contribute to climate protection, stay at the technological frontier, and benefit from the increased environmental and sustainability awareness on the part of households, competitors and suppliers. Key areas of mutual concern to both policymakers and firms, therefore, include the determinants of green innovations – product or process – and how government can promote such innovation dynamics. Part of green innovations are covered by the European Union’s Community Innovation Survey (CIS), while the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) also has data on green patenting dynamics. Using panel data on 35 European countries and covering the period of 2007-2018, including multiple waves of the CIS in a novel approach, we present an analysis on green innovation. The empirical analysis presented shows how key determinants of green innovation from the literature affect selected measures of green innovation. We find that the inward FDI stock intensity positively affects green process innovations (including manufacturing), while the ICT R&D Investment-GDP ratio has a negative impact on green innovativeness. As regards firms with both green process and green product innovations, GDP per capita is found to be a positive driver of innovativeness (excluding manufacturing) and is also a positive driver of green process innovations in firms with only green process innovations – but, paradoxically, is a negative driver of green product innovations in firms with only green product innovations. Regarding the rule of law, there is a positive impact on green innovations. The median age of the labor force has a negative impact on process innovations (excluding manufacturing), while the sign is positive for green process and product innovating firms (both including and excluding manufacturing). A green RCA variable is positively significant for green product innovating firms and green process and product innovators (including and excluding manufacturing). Our findings allow to suggest areas in which national and supranational policymakers should become more active to promote and foster green innovation in Europe.
    Keywords: Green innovation, product innovation, process innovation, ICT, Community Innovation Survey
    JEL: L86 Q55 O30 O31
    Date: 2022–07
  6. By: Carol Corrado; Jonathan Haskel; Massimiliano Iommi; Cecilia Jona-Lasinio
    Abstract: A defining aspect of the digital age is data and its business use. Data have become an important input for firms (e.g., to train artificial intelligence algorithms) but data use is neither accounted for in macroeconomic statistics nor part of business contracts for goods and services provided to customers.This paper puts data and data investments in a framework amenable to measurement and policy analysis aimed at sharpening our understanding of the modern economies. Data is conceptualized as an intangible asset: a storable, nonrival (yet excludable) factor input that is only partially captured in existing macroeconomic and financial statistics. We provide experimental estimates of data investment designed to encompass data and data intelligence for six major European countries (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom) and we found an average value of 5 to 6.5 percent of market sector gross value added in 2010-2018 (Corrado et al, 2022). We also develop a simulation exercise to test the potential growth contribution of data capital, and we find that even limited diffusion of data capital could raise labor productivity growth as much as ½ percentage point per year, but outcomes are highly dependent on factors influenced by policy settings.
    Keywords: data, innovation, intangible capital, productivity growth
    JEL: E22 O47 E01
    Date: 2022–08–08

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