A new World Bank report says that while the Internet, mobile phones and other digital technologies are spreading rapidly throughout the developing world, the anticipated digital dividends of higher growth, more jobs, and better public services have fallen short of expectations, as 60 per cent of the world’s population remains excluded from the commodity.
The report, titled World Development Report 2016: Digital Dividends, stated that the benefits of rapid digital expansion have been skewed towards the wealthy, skilled, and influential who are better positioned to take advantage of the new technologies while the world’s most vulnerable falls behind.
It added that though the number of Internet users worldwide has more than tripled since 2005, with mobile phones being the source of connectivity in developing countries — four billion people still lack access to the Internet.
The World Economic Forum in its Global Information Technology Report published last April, ranked Jamaica’s networked readiness at a new high of 82 of 143 countries versus being placed 85 in 2013 and 86 in 2014.
Two areas for which the country received high ranking were: availability of new technologies (43rd of 143 countries) and quality of management schools (57th of 143 countries).
Regardless of these improvements, Jamaica is considered among those developing and emerging countries that fail to exploit ICT to drive economic and social transformation.
“Although there are many individual success stories, the effect of technology on global productivity, expansion of opportunity for the poor and middle class, and the spread of accountable governance has so far been less than expected. Digital technologies are spreading rapidly, but digital dividends – growth, jobs and services – have lagged behind,” the report stated.
Read more… http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/business/60–of-world—s-population-lack-internet-connectivity—World-Bank——-_48880