Digital economy

OECD Information and Communication Policy News - October 2008


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October 2008 issue
OECD member countries, the European Community and ministers from Chile, Egypt, Estonia, India, Indonesia, Israel, Latvia, Senegal and Slovenia adopted a declaration underlining their commitment to work together to stimulate innovation, competition and investment in information and communications technology.
Their ultimate goal is to build confidence in, and secure the future of, the Internet economy.

The  Seoul Declaration came at the close of the  OECD Ministerial Meeting on the Future of the Internet Economy, held in Seoul, Korea, on 17-18 June 2008. Participants agreed on the need for governments to work closely with business, civil society and technical experts on policies that promote competition, empower and protect consumers, underpin creativity and expand Internet access and use worldwide.

Follow-up to the Seoul Ministerial

The Telecommunications Policy Research Conference
As a follow-up to the OECD Seoul Ministerial Conference, a panel discussion at the Telecommunications Policy Research Conference (TPRC) discussed the outline of a medium term Policy Research Agenda, covering current and future issues related to the further development and growth of the Internet Economy.

The European Union conference "The Internet of Things. The Internet of the Future"
The OECD participated in the French Presidency of the European Union conference “The Internet of Things. The Internet of the Future” in Nice (6-7 October 2008).  The Conference considered developments in areas such as Mobile internet and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), and how the services they enable are likely to affect users in their daily lives in fields such as health, education and energy management.  OECD Work on RFID and Sensors Based Environments was presented, including the OECD Policy Guidance on RFID principles.

The 2008 Internet Governance Forum
This year’s Internet Governance Forum, or IGF, will take place in Hyderabad on 3-6 December 2008. The OECD has proposed several events, foremost of which is an open Forum on the outcomes of the Seoul Ministerial. The open Forum will feature an invited panel of stakeholders. A representative of the Government of India, the host country of the IGF and one of the non-member countries that adopted the Seoul Declaration, will participate along with representatives from member governments, business, the Internet technical community, civil society and organised labour.  In addition, the OECD is organising a workshop on digital content and a best practice forum on public sector information. OECD staff are also participating in a number of events organised by other stakeholders including green ICTs. Further information is available at the IGF website:

Updated broadband statistics and new FAQs

The number of broadband subscribers in the OECD reached 251 million by June 2008, an increase of 14% from June 2007.  This growth increased broadband penetration rates to 21.3 subscriptions per 100 inhabitants, up from 20% in December 2007.
The upgrade to fibre-based connections continues in the OECD. Fibre subscriptions comprise 9% of all broadband connections in the OECD (up from 8% in December 2007). Fibre overtakes DSL/Cable in Korea and Japan and now accounts for 45% of all Japanese broadband subscriptions and 39% in Korea. Korea’s fibre penetration alone (12.2 per 100 inhabitants) is higher than total broadband penetration in 5 OECD countries.

Innovation and Sustainable Growth in a Globalised World

The OECD and the World bank are organising a Joint Conference on Innovation and Sustainable Growth which the OECD and the World Bank which will be held at the OECD headquarters on 18 and morning of 19 November 2008. This event is part of a broader effort for cooperation between the two organisations on innovation and growth issues to develop our combined capacity to study innovation in the context of middle income countries and advice them on best practices.
The preliminary programme of the Conference and registration information can be obtained via:

OECD Joint Conference on Consumer Education

The conference is organised jointly by the OECD Committee on Consumer Policy, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the United Nations Marrakech Task force on Education for Sustainable Consumption (UN MTF ).
The conference will examine major issues and seek to identify good practices in consumer education. Participation in the Forum is restricted to government representatives and selected representatives from the business community and the civil society.

Information Technology Outlook 2008(to be released in December 2008)

Information technology (IT) and broadband are major drivers of research, innovation, economic growth and social change. The 2008 edition of the OECD Information Technology Outlook (to be released in December 2008) analyses recent developments in the IT goods and services industries, and suggests that the outlook is for continued long-term growth, constrained by the current uncertain macroeconomic environment in OECD countries but with somewhat higher growth elsewhere.

Green ICTs

An OECD Conference on ICTs, the Environment and Climate Change, will be held 27-28 May 2009 in Denmark, hosted by the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation – National IT and Telecom Agency. It will bring together policy-makers and major stakeholders and will contribute to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in 2009 (COP15), as well as to ongoing OECD work on ICTs and the environment. This conference will follow on from the Workshop held in May 2008.

Statistics, including a statistical profile prepared for the June 2008  OECD Ministerial meeting on the Future of the Internet Economy held in Seoul, compares major trends in the diffusion of the Internet across OECD and selected non-OECD countries.

About Us

The goal of the OECD's work on Information and Communication Policy is to help governments maximise the benefits of the "information society". Emerging trends in ICT technologies, applications and uses constantly challenge policy development and co-ordination. Through benchmarking and analysis, the OECD is able to help countries with analysis, recommendations and best practices. More information about OECD work on the information society.


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