nep-ict New Economics Papers
on Information and Communication Technologies
Issue of 2023‒06‒26
six papers chosen by
Marek Giebel
Universität Dortmund

  1. Reducing regulatory trade costs: why and how? By Jacques Pelkmans
  2. Insuring Peace: Index-Based Livestock Insurance, Droughts, and Conflict By Kai Gehring; Paul Schaudt
  3. Ewriting Prospectives: Hybridity as a Tool for Human Thought By Artur Matuck
  4. The interpenetration of criminal and lawful economic activities By Elisa Wallwaey; Kerstin Cuhls; Attila Havas
  6. Transformation digitale et transformation structurelle dans les économies d’Afrique Sub-Saharienne (ASS) : les effets variés des technologies de l’information et de la communication (TIC) By Mbondo, Georges Dieudonné; Bouwawe, Duclo

  1. By: Jacques Pelkmans
    Abstract: Regulatory trade costs matter. They consist of the costs incurred by A exporters of effective marketaccess to B due to different regulation and enforcement, in particular of ‘risk regulation’ (health, safety, environment). Stronger, negotiations for ‘deeper’ bilateral and regional trade agreementsas well as estimates of tariff equivalents of ‘regulatory trade costs’ have increased the awarenessthat lowering of regulatory trade costs is quintessential for world trade. For middle-income anddeveloping countries, these costs are rising secularly. This paper critically reviews the three principalways of reducing such costs to the world economy – trade agreements, international regulatorycooperation, and global technical standardisation – and discusses how to render these moreeffective. Key challenges are to reduce national standards setting and to promote more effectivelyworld standards. The European Union plays a frontrunner role in this regard, including for informationand communications technology standards.
    Keywords: Regulatory trade costs, risk regulation, mutual recognition agreements, international regulatory cooperation, the Vienna and Frankfurt Agreements, global ICT standardization
    Date: 2023–04
  2. By: Kai Gehring; Paul Schaudt
    Abstract: We provide novel evidence of how an innovative market-based solution using remote-sensing technology can mitigate conflict. Droughts are a major driver of conflict in Africa, particularly between nomadic pastoralists and sedentary farmers, and climate change is predicted to intensify this problem. The Index-Based Livestock Insurance (IBLI) scheme piloted in Kenya provides automated, preemptive payouts to pastoralists affected by droughts. Combining plausibly exogenous variation in rainfall and the staggered roll-out of IBLI in Kenya over the 2001-2020 period, we find that IBLI strongly reduces drought-induced conflict. One key mechanism is that insured pastoralists travel less far away from their ancestral homelands, reducing conflicts over scarce resources in contested areas. This suggests that market-based solutions are a promising pathway to mitigate conflict beyond difficult institutional reforms and raises the question of how governments can support the adoption of such schemes for underprivileged groups through subsidies or other campaigns.
    Keywords: conflict, conflict resolution, climate change, droughts, pastoralism, insurance, ICT, resources
    JEL: D74 G22 G52 O13 Q34 Q54
    Date: 2023
  3. By: Artur Matuck (The University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil)
    Abstract: E-writing is a field of inquiry generating theories, practices, and applications that continuously redefine our perspective on writing. Traditionally considered as final objects, texts can now be seen as sources for re-information and matrixes for interrelation and reconstruction. E-writing tools challenge deep-rooted cultural habits forming the foundation of our language and thought processes. E-writing reconceives individual authorship into a multi-dividual, socio-machinic, planetwide process. Writing, and by extension, thinking, science, design, expression, artmaking, architecture, economics, and philosophy will be understood as a dialogical process between human actors and intelligent computer applications allied to giant data banks. Collaborative web-based writing and machine-generated authorship will be investigated as human-developmental tools. Nevertheless, present instituted legal theories and systems act as insurmountable obstacles, restraining collaborative and interactional authorship models and practices and advances in human creativity, authorship, and invention. Thus, current intellectual property values and legal theories will readapt to new forms of authorship involving human-machine planetary integration. Each new writing, invention, design, or proposition is now reconceived through its web presence as a potential element in extensive textual constructions. Information, considered as re-information, as data-in-flux, will be increasingly analyzed within parameters such as availability, interconnectivity, formatability, translatability, and disseminability. Texts will have to be fully interconnectable and legally free to interact so that new statements and propositions can be automatically constructed. Then, the full potential of presently available or yet-to-be-created communication technologies will be achieved.
    Keywords: E-writing; Web-based Writing, Computer-generated Writing
    Date: 2023–03
  4. By: Elisa Wallwaey (Fraunhofer ISI, Institute for Systems and Innovation Research); Kerstin Cuhls (Fraunhofer ISI, Institute for Systems and Innovation Research); Attila Havas (Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, AIT Austrian Institute of Technology, Center for Innovation Systems and Policy)
    Abstract: As the world economy operates more and more through computerised transactions, new possibilities for intertwining criminal and lawful economic activities open up, as well as new opportunities for law enforcement agencies to fight crime. Considering the tremendous and potentially devastating damages caused by criminal economic activities, the issue should be high on the agenda of policy-makers, including R&I policy-makers. The race between criminal actors and the state trying to protect companies and citizens will be a permanent one. The paper provides and overview of trends and drivers in these domains, highlighting potential disruptions. It also presents four scenarios with a time horizon of 2040 to explore the role of R&I activities and regulations in shaping the possibilities for the interpenetration of criminal and lawful economic activities and derive policy implications. The complex nature of criminal economic activities, their detection, investigation, and prosecution are related to research and innovation in at least three areas. First, research in, and the development and improvement of, information and communication technologies necessary to monitor, track and analyse criminal activities. Second, regulatory techniques for preventing innovators from i) moving outside the sphere of lawful activities; ii) moving too far and entering a grey zone where regulation is missing; and iii) settling on clear-cut criminal behaviour. Third, research in, and the development and improvement of, forensic techniques of reconstructing what actually happened, and thus attributing responsibility for crime.
    Keywords: Criminal economic activities; Fighting crime; Preventing crime; Information and communication technologies; Regulation; Prospective analyses; Scenarios
    JEL: K42 M48 O17 O38 O39
    Date: 2022–12
  5. By: Hamard Bruno; Pascal Habihirwe
    Abstract: The research study focused on the contribution of ICT and distance education on the learning of university students: the practical case University of Rwanda (UR), (2019 - 2022). The provision of ICT and distance education to university students learning in Rwanda has various contributions in addressing recurring issues such as the student enrollment trend of high school leavers who wish to join university at the first cycle (including various marginalized students), in the reduction of financial expenses (including various educational consumables), and in the administrative aspect (communication, registration, etc.). It is from this situation that the ICT appear as a possible solution to properly overcome these difficulties. This study was conducted in five colleges. A Correlational research design is used in this study. Primary data collected using questionnaire tools. Secondary data obtained from reference books, journals and Internet documents. The study covers a population of 2530 populations and a sample of 345 participants (330 for students and 15 for lecturers and teachers). The Content validity of the instruments was performed before the instruments were pre-tested and reliability calculated using Cronbach's alpha. Data are analyzed both qualitatively and quantitatively using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). The study revealed that various ICT toolkits and distance learning their contribution varies between 71% and 85% of students learning within the university. It was recommended that the government and other stakeholders invest much more in the provision of ICT infrastructure to easily improve its accessibility and user ability for a large number of students and staff. It is hoped that the findings of this study and the suggested recommendations will help the government and the University of Rwanda achieve their potential goal of providing updated ICT infrastructures and distance learning. It is recommended that future researchers carry out similar research in the Rwandan private university to verify whether the contribution of private universities ICT on distance education students has the same implication or not for the public university. Key words: ICT, distance education, students learning
    Date: 2023–03
  6. By: Mbondo, Georges Dieudonné; Bouwawe, Duclo
    Abstract: This article examines the various effects of ICTs on the structural transformation of African economies. It uses a dynamic panel model based on the method of generalized moments in a system applied to a sample of 30 Sub-Saharan African countries covering the period 1995 - 2018. While the results show that, overall, ICTs promote the development of manufacturing industries and offer opportunities to diversify exports, they also show that their expansion is weak due to infrastructural and institutional constraints. It therefore appears that fixed telephone subscriptions and Internet users are positively correlated with industrialization, while mobile telephone subscriptions are positively correlated with export diversification. Promoting the establishment of an integrated digital ecosystem therefore seems necessary to accelerate the structural transformation of all African economies south of the Sahara.
    Keywords: digital transformation, structural change, information and communication technology, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: L60 M15 O11 O33
    Date: 2023–06–03

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