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Impact of ICT on social and economic development


ICT is an enabler of change, an essential element of new developments, and a major contributor to globalization woven into the fabric of daily life. Its impact is extensive, affecting individuals, businesses, industry sectors, communities and governments. It changes the way daily activities are accomplished and processes are executed and in doing so it also impacts social and economic development of countries and regions.

The spread of ICT promoted the development of information society, where economic success and social development became more dependent on the availability and accessibility of information and technology. Furthermore, ICT altered fundamental methodologies of doing activities and gave rise to e-services in communication, trade, employment, education, government, and health.

Recently we witnessed the increase of social media and mobile devices usage as they facilitate the interaction between citizens and their participation in decision-making processes. Today with the rise of knowledge societies and knowledge-based economies, the focus falls on value-added products and processes, placing more demands on ICT development, industry and government.

Despite the importance of the subject “the impact of ICT on the development”, studies both at global and regional levels in this area are still in the early stages. Therefore, ESCWA focused in recent years on this topic to support its member countries in formulating ICT strategies and programmes with positive impact on social and economic development. To that end, ESCWA prepared three studies related to the use and impact of ICT on social and economic development, organized an expert group meeting during which experts from the Arab region discussed the various aspects of ICT use and impact, and organized a capacity building workshop on the measurement of use and impact of ICT development.

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Published: 08 Janauary 2014

Capacity Building Workshop on Measuring the Use and Impact of ICT on Social and Economic Development in the Arab Region

The workshop aimed to raise the awareness and build the capacities of relevant institutions in the region with regard to the understanding and application of ICT use and impact measurement. It examined available frameworks, measurement models, and means to assess and measure the use of ICT and its services, specifically e-government, as well as its impact on Arab youth.

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