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The Economic Impact of ICT

Measurement, Evidence and Implications

image of The Economic Impact of ICT

Information and communications technology (ICT) has become a key driver of economic growth over the past decade. The rapid diffusion of the Internet, of mobile telephony and of broadband networks all demonstrate how pervasive this technology has become. But how precisely does ICT affect economic growth and the efficiency of firms? And how well can these effects be measured?

This report provides an overview of the economic impact of ICT on economic performance, and the ways through which it can be measured. Using available OECD data, the first part of the book examines the available measures of ICT diffusion, the role and impact of ICT investment and the role of ICT-using and ICT-producing sectors in overall economic performance. The second part of the book offers nine studies for OECD countries, based on detailed firm-level data and prepared by researchers and statisticians from a wide range of OECD countries. These studies use a variety of methods and provide detailed insights on the effects of ICT in individual countries.

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Information Technology, Workplace Organisation, Human Capital and Firm Productivity

Evidence for the Swiss Economy

This chapter is based on a multivariate cross-section analysis of data of 1382 Swiss firms for the year 2000. It shows that labour productivity correlates positively a) with ICT indicators measuring the intensity of use of internet and intranet respectively by firms’ employees; b) with variables for new forms of workplace organisation such as team-work, job rotation and decentralisation of decision making; and c) with human capital intensity. Some evidence is also found for complementarities between human capital and ICT capital with respect to productivity but not between organisational capital and the other two kinds of inputs...

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