Information Technology Outlook 2002

ICTs and the Information Economy

image of Information Technology Outlook 2002

Information technology (IT) continues to be a major driver of economic change, restructuring businesses, affecting skills and employment, and contributing significantly to growth and wealth creation. This volume describes the main trends in industries and businesses supplying IT goods and services. It looks at the impact of IT diffusion and applications, as well as the growing importance of network effects as the use of IT expands. It describes recent market dynamics and gives a detailed overview of the globalisation of the information and communication technology (ICT) sector. It also analyses the increasingly important software sector and examines the growth in electronic commerce as well as some of the barriers to its expansion.

This volume also looks at developments in the provision and use of ICT skills, mismatches between supply and demand and potential remedies. It traces the diffusion of ICTs and examines the digital divide among individuals, households and businesses, then highlights the potential of selected technological developments that will affect the commercial exploitation and socio-economic impacts of ICTs in the medium term.

Finally, it provides an overview of IT policies in OECD countries, particularly those aimed at expanding the supply and use of ICT skills and overcoming the digital divide.

English Also available in: French

ICT Diffusion and the Digital Divide

This chapter examines relevant national and international data and addresses the digital divide between and within OECD countries. It does not address digital divide issues for developing economies or the North/South divide. It focuses on the following issues:

-- What are the indicators of the digital divide?

-- What does the digital divide look like? How is it captured in national statistics in terms of social, business and demographic characteristics?

-- How rapidly is the divide changing and in what directions?

This chapter explores indicators of ICT access and use, the differences between leaders and laggards in terms of access and use and measures of changes in access.

English Also available in: French

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