This chapter assesses the use of digital technologies in international development. Digital technologies are transforming economic and social life and are used in almost every sector of development. However, positive benefits in the form of digital dividends are limited by continued digital divides in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) access. Use of digital technologies tends to reflect, reproduce, and amplify existing patterns of inequality. Thus, digital development initiatives need to design for equity, include non-digital communication, and pay attention to potential risks. The chapter then provides examples of contemporary digital development projects applying Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D), and looks at 'frontier technologies' that may shape the future of international development.
Tony Roberts, Kevin Hernandez, and Becky Faith
12. Digital Policy-Making in the European Union
Building the New Economy of an Information Society
Abraham L. Newman
Digital technologies are transforming European societies, politics, and markets. Since the 1970s, the European Union has attempted to navigate these pressures through a package of digital policy-making. These efforts have targeted the dual missions of pan-European market-making, as well as market correction. Relying on a host of governance modes including the regulatory method, policy coordination, incorporated transgovernmental networks, and private governance, the European Union has tried to steer the new information society so as to both spur market growth and protect citizens against abuse. The ultimate success of these efforts has been encumbered by the overall complexity of the sector, where policy efforts quickly bleed over into other issue areas, such as competition policy and justice and home affairs, and have international consequences. Digital policy-making in Europe faces considerable challenges ahead, as EU institutions grapple with the rise of platform companies, disinformation campaigns, and transatlantic disputes over data privacy and the market power of US-based technology companies.