Tag Archives: EIU

Profile: Economist Intelligence Unit

The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) is an independent business that is know for its “unparalleled coverage of major and emerging markets” (eiu.com). They are the world leader in global business intelligence; they provide researching findings and market information on over 200 countries to business leaders, companies, governments, and universities around the world so that they can assess international market opportunities and risks, and make decisions with confidence. The EIU focuses on 6 key industries in their fieldwork and research: 1) Retail, 2) Energy, 3) Telecoms, 4) Financial services, 5) Healthcare, and 6) Automotive companies. (Check out a special EIU report with predictions and discussions of these industries for 2013!). Over 1.5 million people and corporations scattered throughout Europe, North America, Asia, South/ Centeral America, Africa, and the Middle East rely on the research and guidance of the EIU.

The EIU is comprised of “one of the largest and most experienced teams of country analysts in the world” (eiu.com). More specifically, they have 300 full-time professionals stationed in 39 offices around the world that specialize in economics, politics, risk, industry, and management. Many of their country analysts work in-country, so they can provide “an understanding of local nuances…about individual countries and industries that you cannot find elsewhere” (eiu.com). Most of their professionals live or have lived in the region they cover, so they know the culture, and in many cases the local language. An interesting fact about the EIU is that their expert team of 350 individuals speak a combined 25 different languages.

Their wide range of true global expertise allows the EIU to provide public ‘Global Forecasting Services’ on their website which includes world trade rates, exchange rates, information on hot commodities like oil, global news reports, and comprehensive charts and graphs.

In addition, with the help of outside partners, the EIU is able to provide data services for the public. Our reading “EIU Digital Economy Rankings” and other reports like “EIU Technology Indicators & Forecasts” are examples of the types of valuable reports that the EIU publishes. It’s great that much of their expertise and research is available to students and the general public.

In collaboration with their sister organization ‘The Economist’, the EIU assists in putting together over 100 events per year around the world on current issues and events relevant to their field of work. Examples of these events are: “the World Forests Summit” in Stockholm on “achieving sustainable forest management on a global scale”, the “Ghana Investment Summit” in Accra, and “Technology Frontiers Moscow.”

The EIU’s activities are widespread and their contribution to the today’s global society is invaluable. Visit their website to learn more!

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Brazil National ICT Resources

Notes: Studying Brazil as your focus country may not be as difficult as studying others, but it certainly takes some digging to find the resources you will need to analyze it. Having a basic background in Portuguese will be very helpful because most of the websites for the government branches that deal with ICT are in Portuguese. Furthermore, Brazil does not have a digitally published version of their National ICT Policy; therefore, most of your sources will be non-governmental overviews of the current ICT situation in the country.

While Brazil’s actual national ICT policy cannot be found on the web, a very thorough analysis of their latest policy, namely the Productive Development Policy (PDP), which was launched in 2008, can be found here:

Another key source in analyzing Brazil’s ICT sector is this GISWatch Country Report:

This publication gives another good general overview of the ICT landscape in Brazil, as well as the other BRIC countries, China and India.

The International Telecommunications Union briefly discusses Brazil’s national policy development and e-government.

The ITU also published another report that has myriad data on Brazil and its ICT sector, complete with tables full of indicators and rankings. This one is far more helpful.

This report provides the Network Readiness Index score for Brazil (and other countries), as well as an in-depth breakdown of that score. It is great for comparing and contrasting Brazil to other countries.

The following EIU report was really only useful for the numerical score breakdown of the Digital Economy Score. It was good for comparing and contrasting Brazil to its neighbors.


EIU Digital Economy Rankings 2010, Innovation, and Changes in Methodology

One of our assigned readings for class (The Economist Intelligence Unit Digital Economy Rankings 2010 http://tinyurl.com/a4f4k2kpiqued my interest and made me think about how much technology is accelerating and its effects. The EIS report made a point to speak about how due to the rapid changes in technology, the methods in reporting the significance and usage of technological indicators have to be adjusted in order to stay accurate. In this case monitoring not just the quantity but also the quality of technology. 

This point made me think about the giant strides the world has made in terms of technology. My generation is one of change, innovation, and entrepreneurship. We grew up along side the technology of the telephone, transforming from a giant block with bad reception to mp3, phones, calendars  cameras, and so much more all in one. The cellular phone has become so ingrained in urban and parts of rural culture that you can see people in remote developing areas with cell phones like below. 

Image

Just as the the methodology of measuring indicators of technology needs to be adjusted so does peoples usage of technology. Previously home phones or land lines were a huge part of the means of communication but now are turning obsolete due to the more efficient mobile phone. I agree that a big part of innovation is change and small adjustments in order to keep up. The EIS has the right idea of change for efficiency and accuracy and hopefully other reports and studies have reflected on their methodology in relation to innovation as well!


Is Internet Access a Fundamental Right?

Within one of the assigned readings for this week, namely, The Economist Intelligence Unit Digital Economy Rankings 2010 (http://tinyurl.com/a4f4k2ka point was raised that sparked my curiosity- should access to the internet and other ICTs be considered a fundamental human right?

The traditional reliance on mass media intermediaries been superseded by the exchanging of ideas, opinions, and information over the emerging global network called the Internet. Because media has grown to be more and more independent, and communication practices are successively evolving, further attention paid to those pockets of people who are still excluded from the benefits of public access to ICTS is warranted. A growing number of policy makers are working to address this issue, particularly where network infrastructure is still being developed and invested in. The report provides the example of Australia, which is working to bring the minority of its citizens, who live in remote or rural residences, within reach of high-speed Internet through their $40 billion National Broadband Network Initiative. Another example that illustrates a changing attitude towards uniform access to the Internet is that of Finland, the country that comes in as number 4 on the EIU Rankings. Finland “has gone so far as to enshrine a law in Internet access as a basic human right.” This debate goes hand-in-hand with the other emerging concept of a knowledge society. According to UNESCO (as taken from the Untwin text), in said society, “knowledge is a public good, available to each and every individual.” A knowledge society favors inclusion; and the only way such societies will be formed, recognized, and sustained is if the consideration of even access to the Internet and other ICTs as a fundamental right becomes an internationally accepted belief. Statistics positively point to the likelihood of this type of a global attitude shift. As the report states, “a recent BBC poll of Internet users found that 87% of people across 27 countries believe this should indeed be” treated as a basic right as defined by being human.


Argentina National ICT Resources

Argentina National ICT Resources

Notes: Using Argentina as your country can be very challenging sometimes. I would definitely recommend having background knowledge of Spanish because most websites for the government branches that deal with ICT are entirely in Spanish. Additionally, Argentina does not have an updated National ICT Policy, therefore, most of your sources will be non-governmental overviews of the current ICT situation in the country.

 

Argentina does not have a current National ICT Policy. This link (briefly) discusses the outdated National Program for the Information Society.

Title: Analysis of the national ICT policies of Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Chile and Mexico by the Author: the FORESTA Project (non-governmental source)

http://www.forestaproject.eu/site2/results/readEbook/10

Last updated: September, 2012

Language: English

 

Because of the outdated/lack of policy, there are no sources regarding its implementation. The following link is related to the ICT centered governmental organization, FONTAR, which funds and implements innovative ICT projects.

Title: Fondo Tecnologico Argentino

Author: Agencia Nacional de Promocion Cientifica y Tecnologica (governmental source)

http://www.agencia.gov.ar/spip.php?article239

Last updated: Not available

Language: Spanish (can be read in English through Google Translate)

 

The following link includes a great general overview of different governmental organizations and general trends in the ICT sector of Argentina, including international relations in terms of ICT cooperation, it is good for answering WSIS Action Items. Also includes discussion of the government’s “White Book of ICT Prospective, Project 2020” outlining their priorities for the future of ICT.

Title: Status of ICT policy development: Country Report Argentina

Author: Promotion of an ICT Dialogue between Europe and America Latina (non-governmental source)

http://www.pro-ideal.eu/drupal/sites/default/files/D5.1_Status_of_ICT_policy_development_Country_report_Argentina.pdf

Last updated: April, 2011

Language: English

 

The International Telecommunications Union briefly discusses Argentina’s e-government initiatives in regards to WSIS Action Item 7, ICT applications.

Title: ITU’s National e-Strategies for Development

Author: International Telecommunications Union (non-governmental source)

http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/cyb/app/docs/National_estrategies_for_development_2010.pdf

Last updated: 2010

Language: English

 

This report provides the Network Readiness Index score for Argentina (and other countries), as well as an in-depth breakdown of that score. It is great for comparing and contrasting Argentina to other countries.

Title: The Global Information Technology Report 2012

Author: World Economic Forum (non-governmental source)

http://www.weforum.org/reports/global-information-technology-report-2012

Last updated: 2012

Language: English

 

The following EIU report was really only useful for the numerical score breakdown of the Digital Economy Score. It was good for comparing and contrasting Argentina to its neighbors.

Title: Digital Economy Rankings 2010

Author: Economist Intelligence Unit (non-governmental source)

http://www-935.ibm.com/services/us/gbs/bus/html/ibv-digitaleconomy2010.html?cntxt=a1000055

Last updated: 2010

Language: English

 

This report was very helpful in highlighting the gap between rural and urban provinces. It also has information on One Laptop Per Child in Argentina, Broadcasting Law, and ICT stakeholders.

Title: Country Report: Argentina [written for the Global Information Society Watch]

Author: Nodo Tau [a civil organization, based in Argentina, which seeks to get everyone in Argentina “connected”] (non-governmental source)

http://www.giswatch.org/en/country-report/civil-society-participation/argentina

Last updated: 2007

Language: English

 

This link is not really that useful in the overall paper but it is good at addressing some WSIS Action Items. It talks about Argentina’s recent struggles with increased government censorship of the media.

Title: Freedom of the Press 2011-Argentina

Author: Freedom House (non-governmental source)

http://www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-press/2011/argentina

Last updated: 2011

Language: English


ICT4D Reflection: ICT Capacities and Standards

I came into this semester with very little knowledge about the Information and Communication Technology for Development field. None of my previous International Development classes had such a focus on technology, despite the huge impact it can have in developing communities. Though I am not a very technologically inclined person, nor do I see myself pursuing a career that deals much with technology, this class taught me a lot of basic yet essential information about ICT4D implementation and usage.

One thing I learned this semester that will be helpful in my future as a development professional is the ability to measure a country’s technological capacity based on various standards and rankings. It is extremely important to ICT innovation for the target country to have a suitable technological environment in order for the project to be successful. If the country does not have the capacity to support an ICT project, the project will fail and it will be a waste of time and resources. As we have learned, many development project fail for a number of different reasons. It is important to make more efficient projects in order to make more progress in the development field. The numerous standards and benchmarks available to measure technological capacity and readiness of a country will be helpful resources in the future when I am creating development projects.

We looked at a number of examples of technological rankings in class. We looked at the 2010 Economist Intelligence Unit Digital Economy Rankings, 2012 World Economic Forum Global Information Technology Report, and the 2012 WSIS National E-Strategies for Development. These reports give information about the dimensions of a country’s technology sector and e-readiness in order to help assess its ability to sustain various technological projects. These standards and rankings could be instrumental in the development of the ICT4D field and the progress that can be made in developing countries.

Given the recent growth of the ICT4D field and how important it is becoming in the larger development field, these standards could be useful to me whether I think I am going into technology development or not. As a development professional you cannot ignore the importance of technology and the potential it holds in the development of marginalized communities. I am happy to have taken this class and learned about the ICT4D field and just how extensive and important is it for development.