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Manual on E-Readiness

THE CHALLENGE OF GLOBALIZATION

An increasing number of NAM Member countries (NMCs) have capitalized on globalization to achieve rapid growth and poverty reduction. Participation in the global economy has strengthened through growth in international trade and movement of capital and labor. Specifically, policies and institutions were tailored to facilitate growth based on factor accumulation, particularly in the early stages of the growth process.

Policymakers must continue to be alert and responsive to both the opportunities and the challenges of globalization if NMCs are to continue to capitalize on the process. There are two major themes. The first is that development strategies should be modified both to adapt to a changing global economic environment and to take advantage of the opportunities that come with globalization. The Asian development approach, emphasizing rapid technology transfer to create export industries was, and is, quite successful. Yet, as NMCs move closer to the global technology frontier, certain modalities, such as innovation based on FDI and R&D, will become more important. Moreover, the revolution in information and communications technology (ICT) will continue to create opportunities in goods and services export markets, but those countries with the appropriate ICT infra-structure and personnel will best be able to exploit these opportunities. The second theme is that there are also risks to a globalization strategy and policies must be formulated to minimize them. Greater volatility is probably the biggest risk that accompanies globalization. Therefore various ways should be developed to reduce the volatility in economic performance that has been associated with globalization. These include policies to monitor and regulate capital flows, develop an appropriate exchange rate regime, and minimize fluctuations in productivity and investment. What is also needed are range of social programs that can minimize the impact of volatility on the poorest groups in society.

NMCs have been generally successful in integrating themselves into the global economic system. Indeed, they have attracted significant amounts of foreign investment, while trade is a strong and integral driver of economic growth. They have also had to develop the necessary policies and institutions to deal with volatility stemming from large capital movements.

NMCs face a number of policy issues and challenges. In the context of globalization, the first challenge for NMCs is to continue to move into areas where global demand is rising and where the opportunities for those countries with comparative advantage are manifest. The second challenge is to assess and manage the risks presented by the evolving global economic system. The commitment among governments to addressing this challenge is healthy and encouraging, particularly in light of the difficulties experienced during the Asian financial crisis.

Powerful economic and technological forces are at work that are likely to render the world economy even more globalized in the future than it is today. The challenge for NMCs and emerging economies elsewhere is, therefore, how to capitalize on the opportunities for growth and development afforded by globalization, while at the same time minimizing the risks. In an obvious sense, this means taking appropriate policies to maintain a stable macro economy, maintaining prudent financial policies, and adopting sound regulatory practices. The fundamental challenge is how governments, in cooperation with the private sector, can develop capabilities and capacities to determine appropriate policies and implement them.

Governments should also be able to facilitate the development of a social consensus on goals and instruments, and an equitable means for sharing the benefits of implementing appropriate policies and programs. Governments should also maintain flexibility to modify their policy stance as circumstances change.

INFORMATION AGE

It has been said that the third wave of civilization is the information age, after agricultural and industrial revolution. This information age puts emphasized of value in the information itself. The information age and the internet revolution are driven by the synergy between two virtuous cycles. The first is the power of any-to-any connectivity with its ultimate form of the net. Second is the power of universal computing device which follows Moore laws (device computing power doubles every 18 months). The figure below show the diagram and path of development of each cycle until they combine and produce the impact of the net today.

 

ICT for NMC

Why ICT is important ? ICT is pervasive, tools for development, can help accelerate growth for least develop or developing countries. ICT also enables the openness and stimulate democracy

How can countries exploit ICT for its benefit? Example has shown that develop countries can ride on the wave of ICT and create opportunity for themselves to compete at global level. NMC particularly developing countries can also leverage ICT and level the playing field for global competition. ICT transcend the boundaries of traditional level of development and provide the means for least develop countries to leapfrog.

Knowing the importance of ICT as set forth above, the set of document aims to assist NMCs in ICT development and leverage it for their own national benefit while contributing to the world. 

The e-readiness condition in every country is different. E-readiness is defined as the level of acceptance and abilities to develop ICT. The capital E follow the similar naming as in e-commerce and e-business. Every country has to make self-assessment in order they can develop the right ICT plan. A comprehensive self-assessment tool can figure out the e-readiness condition.

ICT development plan must start with knowing what assets and capabilities do the country have and what must be done to leverage these advantages. The plan also should identify what must be acquired in order to improve level of e-readiness. Therefore a framework for analyzing and determining a level of e-readiness is a basic before drawing up a plan for ICT.  One important aspect is e-leadership which is basically commitment from top government level toward ICT deployment

Rather than starting from scratch, an analytical framework for calculating a country’s IT capability developed by Peter Wolcott (University of Nebraska), Seymour Goodman (University of Arizona) and Grey Burkhart will be adopted for the self-assessment tools as a model for evaluating a country’s e-readiness. This studies however does not provide questionnaire for assessment, rather they rely on qualitative judgment for scoring. What we are developing here is list of question combining qualitative and quantitative data to aid assessment.

Next is the manuals which are aimed mostly to policy maker. The manual is divided into three level, depending on e-readiness level. There are different emphasize for each level but the objective is to support ICT development.

The manuals shall provide guidelines for countries to improve or optimize its e-readiness. Self-assessment of e-readiness is provided on separate document as a framework to determine the level of each country. Various factors were taken into account in this self-assessment. Some of these factors were later becoming key factors, which need to be considered in improving e-readiness. Some were prerequisite and played crucial role as they had to be available even for the initial level.

Last title is general manual on ICT which cover computer and network. It will dwell on the history and development of both field as well as future assessment. The topic covered range from computer evolution and operating system evolution. Other topic discussed is internet history and development. The last topic covered is network computer in the future.

About NAM CSSTC

Manual on
E-Readiness

The title of the documents

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    Self Assessment for E-readiness
    Manual for Basic Level
    Manual for Developing Level
    Manual for Advance Level
    Supplement on ICT
     
About NAM CSSTC
Databank
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    Experts
    Reports
    Manuals on E-Readiness
     
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