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How's Life in the Digital Age?

Opportunities and Risks of the Digital Transformation for People's Well-being

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This report documents how the ongoing digital transformation is affecting people’s lives across the 11 key dimensions that make up the How’s Life? Well-being Framework (Income and wealth, Jobs and earnings, Housing, Health status, Education and skills, Work-life balance, Civic engagement and governance, Social connections, Environmental quality, Personal security, and Subjective well-being). A summary of existing studies highlights 39 key impacts of the digital transformation on people’s well-being. The review shows that these impacts can be positive as digital technologies expand the boundaries of information availability and enhance human productivity, but can also imply risks for people’s well-being, ranging from cyber-bullying to the emergence of disinformation or cyber-hacking. In sum, making digitalisation work for people’s well-being would require building equal digital opportunities, widespread digital literacy and strong digital security. Continued research and efforts in improving statistical frameworks will be needed to expand our knowledge on the many topics covered in this report.

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How's life in the digital age in Japan?

Unfortunately, data limitations prevent a comprehensive analysis of the opportunities and risks of the digital transformation in Japan. Overall, Japan’s performance in terms of opportunities and risks of the digital transformation is mixed. Figures for ICT access are relatively low compared to other OECD countries, which may partially be explained by differences in methodology. The share of people using the Internet, however, is well above the OECD average, at 95%. Digital skills in Japan are relatively high, with 35% of people scoring at an intermediate level of skills, compared to 30% on average in the OECD. The return on these skills in Japan is substantial: the labour market returns to ICT tasks are the third highest in the OECD. At the same time, Japan’s labour market is relatively exposed to job automation, with 39% of jobs estimated to be at risk. In the area of governance and civic engagement, Japan scores very high in the availability and accessibility of open government data, according to the OECD OURdata Index. Moreover, 17% of people in Japan report having encountered disinformation in the past week, which is well below the OECD average of 27%.

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