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DOES ICT GENERATE ECONOMIC GROWTH? A META†REGRESSION ANALYSIS

T. Stanley (), Chris Doucouliagos () and Piers Steel

Journal of Economic Surveys, 2018, vol. 32, issue 3, 705-726

Abstract: Despite phenomenal technological progress and exponential growth in computing power, economic growth remains comparative sluggish. In this paper, we investigate two core issues: (1) is there really no connection between ICT and national economic growth? and (2) what factors moderate the ICT–growth relationship? We apply meta†regression analysis to 466 estimates drawn from 59 econometric studies that explore the Solow or Productivity Paradox that there is little impact of ICT on economic growth and productivity. We explore the differential impact of ICT on developed and developing countries and the differential impact of different types of ICT: landlines, cell phones, computer technology and Internet access. After accommodating potential econometric misspecification bias and publication selection bias, we detect evidence that ICT has indeed contributed positively to economic growth, at least on average. Both developed and developing countries benefit from landline and cell technologies, with cell technologies’ growth effect approximately twice as strong as landlines. However, developed countries gain significantly more from computing than do developing countries. In contrast, we find little evidence that the Internet has had a positive impact on growth.

Date: 2018
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