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.



How's life in the digital age in Portugal?

Relative to other OECD countries, Portugal has a relatively high level of exposure to the risks of the digital transformation, while having only marginally benefitted from its opportunities. Internet access (76.9% of households have a broadband Internet connection) is slightly below the OECD average, but it has more than doubled since 2005 (when the share was 31.5%). Internet use and the variety of uses are relatively limited while there is a very high level of inequality of uses of the Internet in Portugal, meaning that although a minority of the population uses the Internet for a large range of activities, the majority of the population uses the Internet for very few purposes. Likewise, people do not use the Internet much for online consumption, online selling or job search, suggesting that the momentum of income and wealth generation through digital activities is weak. In comparison to other OECD countries, many Portuguese people report lackingskills to access e-government services and they report high levels of digital security incidents. In contrast, the Portuguese score above the OECD average when it comes to seeking health information online and in expressing political opinions online.



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