Since 2001, The Global Information Technology Report series published by the World Economic Forum in partnership with Cornell University and INSEAD has measured the drivers of the ICT revolution using the Networked Readiness Index. For each of the 143 economies covered, it allows areas of priority to be identified to more fully leverage ICTs for development.
Four important messages emerge from the latest edition. First, as mentioned above, the ICT revolution holds the potential of transforming economies and societies and of addressing some of the most pressing global challenges of our time. Second, this ICT revolution is well under way in some parts of the world. In these places, it is even accelerating as a result of the ubiquity of broadband Internet, the democratization of technologies, and the accelerating pace of innovation. Third, the ICT revolution has not so far reached large parts of the planet. Many of those who stand to gain the most from it are not yet connected. In order to better leverage ICTs for development, a higher level of preparedness and better infrastructure and access are needed. In this context, government leadership and vision are critical. Finally, we observe that digital divides exist within countries. Even in the most advanced economies, only certain segments of the population are benefitting from ICTs. Many are left behind because of their age, limited digital literacy, lack of access, or remoteness.