nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2023‒02‒20
eight papers chosen by
Marek Giebel
Universität Dortmund

  1. Mobile internet and the rise of political tribalism in Europe By Manacorda, Marco; Tabellini, Guido; Tesei, Andrea
  2. The stereotype that girls lack talent: A worldwide investigation By Clotilde Napp; Thomas Breda
  3. Information Technology, Improved Access, and Use of Prescription Drugs By Petri Bockerman; Mika Kortelainen; Liisa T. Laine; Mikko Nurminen; Tanja Saxell
  4. Nexus between Digital Infrastructure, Productivity, and International Trade Participation: Firm-level evidence from India’s Unorganized Sector MSMEs By Neha Jain; Sugandha Huria
  5. Digitalization and Resilience By Davide Furceri; Alexander Copestake; Julia Estefania-Flores
  6. Gender Gap and Parenthood Penalties in Business Travel from 2001 to 2017: Occupational Variations and Associations with Technology Use By Hristina Gaydarska; Miwa Matsuo
  7. How Do Transaction Costs Influence Remittances By Mr. Kangni R Kpodar; Patrick A. Imam
  8. Quality discrimination in healthcare markets By Rosa-Branca Esteves; Ziad Ghandour; Odd Rune Straume

  1. By: Manacorda, Marco; Tabellini, Guido; Tesei, Andrea
    Abstract: We study the political effects of the diffusion of mobile Internet between 2007 and 2017, using data on electoral outcomes and on mobile Internet signal across the 84, 564 municipalities of 22 European countries. We find that access to mobile Internet increased voters' support for right-wing populist parties and for parties running on extreme socially conservative platforms, primarily in areas with greater economic deprivation. Using survey data, we also show that mobile Internet increased communitarian attitudes, such as nationalism and dislike of strangers and minorities. We conclude that mobile Internet benefitted right-wing populist parties because, in line with findings in social psychology, it fostered offline tribalism.
    Keywords: populism; communitarianism; Europe; mobile internet
    JEL: D72 D91 L86
    Date: 2022–10–14
  2. By: Clotilde Napp (Université Paris Dauphine-PSL - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres, CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, DRM - Dauphine Recherches en Management - Université Paris Dauphine-PSL - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Thomas Breda (PSE - Paris School of Economics - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: Recent research has shown that there exist gender stereotypes that portray men as more brilliant or inherently talented than women. We provide a large-scale multinational investigation of these stereotypes and their relationship with other gender gaps. Using a survey question asked to more than 500, 000 students in 72 countries, we build a measure of the stereotypes associating talent with men and show that they are present in almost all studied countries. These stereotypes are stronger among high-achieving students and in more developed or more gender-egalitarian countries. Similar patterns are observed for gender gaps in competitiveness, self-confidence, and willingness to work in an ICT (Information and Communication Technology)–related occupation. Statistical analysis suggests that these three latter gender gaps could be related to stereotypes associating talent with men. We conclude that these stereotypes should be more systematically considered as a possible explanation for the glass ceiling.
    Date: 2022–03–09
  3. By: Petri Bockerman (University of Jyvaskyla, Labour Institute for Economic Research LABORE and IZA Institute of Labor Economics); Mika Kortelainen (University of Turku and VATT Institute for Economic Research); Liisa T. Laine (University of Missouri); Mikko Nurminen (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland); Tanja Saxell (VATT Institute for Economic Research and Helsinki GSE)
    Abstract: We estimate the effects of information technology designed to improve access to medication while limiting overuse. We focus on benzodiazepines, commonly prescribed and effective but addictive medications. We study the staggered rollout of a nationwide electronic prescribing system over four years in Finland and use population-wide, individual-level administrative data sets. We find an increase in benzodiazepine use on average due to increased prescription renewals. The effect is most pronounced among younger patients. We find little evidence of improvement in their general health outcomes but observe substantial increases in diagnoses of prescription drug abuse disorders and poisonings. Our results show robust evidence that easier access may lead to medication overuse.
    Keywords: Information technology, electronic prescribing, medication access, overuse, repeat prescribing
    JEL: H51 H75 I12 I18
    Date: 2023–01
  4. By: Neha Jain (Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), New Delhi); Sugandha Huria (Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), New Delhi)
    Abstract: The study investigates whether access to digital ways of conducting a business can enhance the productivity of the unorganized sector MSMEs in India, and hence, foster their participation in international trade. The analysis is conducted using the National Sample Survey’s (NSS) 73rd round on unincorporated non-agricultural Indian enterprises for the year 2015-16, covering approximately 2, 90, 000 firms, and performing separate analysis for both manufacturing and services firms. The key findings are: First, access to ICT infrastructure has a positive impact on firm-level productivity while controlling for firm-level characteristics. Second, the quantile regression analysis confirms the robust impact of digital assets across different levels of productivity. Third, the Probit Regression Model highlights the combined positive and significant impact of digital infrastructure and productivity on the international trade participation of an unorganized sector MSME. These findings can serve as a motivation for accelerating ‘bottom-up approach’ in the policy efforts towards better productivity and digital transformation of these firms, particularly for manufacturing MSMEs.
    Keywords: Digitalization, Productivity, MSMEs, Exports
    JEL: D24 F61 J24 L86 L81 O33
    Date: 2022
  5. By: Davide Furceri; Alexander Copestake; Julia Estefania-Flores
    Abstract: This paper investigates the role of digitialization in improving economic resilience. Using balance sheet data from 24, 000 firms in 75 countries, and a difference-in-differences approach, we find that firms in industries that are more digitalized experience lower revenue losses following recessions. Early data since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic suggest an even larger effect during the resulting recessions. These results are robust across a wide range of digitalization measures—such as ICT input and employment shares, robot usage, online sales, intangible assets and digital skills listed on online profiles—and several alternative specifications.
    Keywords: Resilience; Digitalization; Recessions; Firms; Local Projection; digitalization measure; macroeconomic data; balance sheet data; outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic; revenue loss; employment share; Economic recession; COVID-19; Global
    Date: 2022–10–28
  6. By: Hristina Gaydarska (Center for iPS Cell Research and Applicaton, Kyoto University, JAPAN); Miwa Matsuo (Research Institute for Economics and Business Administration, Kobe University, JAPAN)
    Abstract: This paper evaluates transitions in gender differences and parenthood penalties in the chance of business travel, focusing on variations by occupation and technology usage. Although literature documents that women and parents of small children are substantially less likely to travel for business, particularly long ones, little research has explored changes in the gap. Moreover, not much attention has been given to whether they vary by business travel distance, occupation, or technology adaptations. This study analyzes domestic intra-regional business travel likelihood by different distance thresholds, using three U.S. National Household Travel Surveys from 2001 to 2017. By employing the Probit model, our analysis finds narrowing gender gaps and parenthood penalties in business mobility, thanks to the shrinking travel needs. Internet-savvy workers, in particular, experienced narrower gender gaps, especially among those without small children. The conditional prediction suggests a disappearing gender gap and parenthood gap for the sales and service workers, even for trips over 50 miles per day. Contrary, the gender gap in business mobility among the professional and managerial workers persistently remained in 2017 for long-distance trips. The declining trend in the gender gap and parenthood penalty for the business travel likelihood is a vital sign for reducing inequalities and work-life balances.
    Keywords: Business travel; Gender gap; Internet (non) savvy; ICT development
    JEL: R4 J16
    Date: 2023–02
  7. By: Mr. Kangni R Kpodar; Patrick A. Imam
    Abstract: Using a new quarterly panel database on remittances (71 countries over the period 2011Q1- 2020Q4), this paper investigates the elasticity of remittances to transaction costs in a high frequency and dynamic setting. It adds to the literature by systematically exploring the heterogeneity in the cost-elasticity of remittances along several country characteristics. The findings suggest that cost reductions have a short-term positive impact on remittances, that dissipates beyond one quarter. According to our estimates, reducing transaction costs to the Sustainable Development Goal target of 3 percent could generate an additional US$32bn in remittances, higher that the direct cost savings from lower transaction costs, thus suggesting an absolute elasticity greater than one. Among remittance cost-mitigation factors, higher competition in the remittance market, a deeper financial sector, and adequate correspondent banking relationships are associated with a lower elasticity of remittance to transaction costs. Similarly, remittance cost-adaptation factors such as enhanced transparency in remittance costs, improved financial literary and higher ICT development coincide with remittances being less sensitive to transaction costs. Supplementing the panel analysis, the use of micro data from the USA-Mexico corridor confirm that migrants facing higher transaction costs tend to remit less, and that this effect is less pronounced for skilled migrants and those that have access to a bank account.
    Keywords: Remittances; Transaction Costs; Elasticity; Migration; elasticity of remittance; remittance market; remittances flow; remittance cost; cost-mitigation factor; Income; Exchange rates; Correspondent banking; Global
    Date: 2022–11–04
  8. By: Rosa-Branca Esteves (NIPE/Center for Research in Economics and Management, University of Minho, Portugal); Ziad Ghandour (NIPE/Center for Research in Economics and Management, University of Minho, Portugal); Odd Rune Straume (NIPE/Center for Research in Economics and Management, University of Minho, Portugal; and Department of Economics, University of Bergen, Norway)
    Abstract: Recent advances in healthcare information technologies allow healthcare providers to more accurately track patient characteristics and predict the future treatment costs of previously treated patients, which increases the scope for providers to quality discriminate across different patient types. We theoretically analyse the potential implications of such quality discrimination in a duopoly setting with profit-maximising hospitals, fixed prices and heterogeneous patients. Our analysis shows that the ability to quality discriminate tends to intensify competition and lead to higher quality provision, which benefits patients but makes the hospitals less profitable. Nevertheless, the effect on social welfare is a priori ambiguous, since quality discrimination also leads to an inefficient allocation of patients across hospitals.
    Keywords: Quality discrimination; Hospital competition; Patient heterogeneity
    JEL: I11 I14 L13
    Date: 2022

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