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Global IT Report 2013: Broadband Investments Bring Growth and Jobs

Can broadband lead to economic growth and employment?

This year’s edition of the World Economic Forum’s Global Information Technology Report (GITR), sponsored in part by Cisco, tackles this critical question and the answer is a decisive ‘yes’. Launched today (April 10) in New York, this year’s GITR, titled “Growth and Jobs in a Hyperconnected World”, details how 144 countries are investing in broadband and IT, and realizing benefits of economic growth and employment.

The top of the report’s Networked Readiness Index (NRI) rankings are dominated by northern European, north American and ‘Asia Tiger’ countries. Several emerging countries, however, are making significant strides: Mexico (progressing from 76th to 63rd) and Colombia (advancing from 73rd to 66th) in Latin America, Turkey (moving from 52nd to 45th) in Central and Eastern Europe, and Kazakhstan (improving twelve positions rom 55th to 43rd) and Georgia (rising from 88th to 65th place) in the CIS region.GITR 2013 - Cover_Page_001

But while these emerging countries experienced gains in their Networked Readiness, other emerging economies are not making progress in narrowing the divide. So what can countries do to boost broadband adoption in order to capture economic growth and employment benefits?

My colleague, John Garrity, and I focus on this question in our GITR chapter examining national broadband and ICT plans. (Chapter 1.3, “Convergent Objectives, Divergent Strategies: A Taxonomy of National Broadband and ICT Plans”)

We found that governments seeking to expand broadband adoption emphasize policies that focus on fostering demand as well as broadband supply. (Figure 1)

Pepper - GITR Blog Fig1

Broad-based plans are the most comprehensive and incorporate a wide range of policy recommendations on both supply- and demand-side dimensions. Examples of broad-based country plans include the United States (2010) and Qatar (2011).

Supply-driven plans focus on actions to build out infrastructure and increase broadband availability through competition and investment policies; they also include direct action to reach underserved populations. Country examples include Australia (2009), Germany (2009) and the United Kingdom (2010).

Demand-driven plans focus on intensifying the utilization of broadband and ICTs to drive economic growth such as in Morocco (2008) and Poland (2008).

A minority of plans are limited in both the supply- and demand-sides. However, even these Emergent plans are valuable as they begin a national conversation on broadband.

The taxonomy we developed (see Figure 2) establishes a common language governments can use as they develop their national broadband plan and provides a way to identify gaps in current broadband policy environments. Countries without a cohesive national broadband plan risk losing ground in terms of global competitiveness.

Pepper - GITR Blog Fig2

Read more about the GITR 2013 report, sponsored by Cisco, at http://reports.weforum.org/global-information-technology-report-2013/

Watch the unveiling of the GITR 2013 live at: http://new.livestream.com/wef/2013ITReport

Download the Cisco contributed chapter featuring our new taxonomy for national broadband plans: GITR 2013 – chapter 1.3 Convergent Objectives, Divergent Strategies CISCO

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Cisco Recognized on “Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World” List (#WEF)

Cisco is honored to be on the Global 100 list of the worlds’ most sustainable companies as announced today at the World Economic Forum in Davos by Corporate Knights, a Toronto, Canada-based media and investment research company.

Being recognized by Corporate Knights as a company that takes sustainability very seriously is a nice reflection of the values that our 66,000 global employees hold.  We certainly want to be a successful company and a measure of that success includes operating in a sustainable and responsible manner.  Cisco strongly believes in creating shared value for the communities in which we operate as well as our business.

Tae Yoo, Cisco’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs commented, “We are very proud of our inclusion on the Global 100 list. Cisco is deeply committed to corporate social responsibility and utilizing the power of people and technology networks to multiply our impact on society, the environment and our business.”

Commenting on this year’s Global 100, Toby Heaps, Corporate Knights CEO, remarked, “the Global 100 are leading a resource productivity revolution, transforming waste into treasure and doing more with less. They are steering our civilization away from ecological overshoot and back to a place of balance with our planet.”

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Cisco CSR Collaborates for Impact at the World Economic Forum

“We believe economic progress without social development is not sustainable, while social development without economic progress is not feasible.” – Klaus Schwab, Founder and Chairman of the World Economic Forum

World-Economic-Forum-2Historically individuals and institutions have often been limited to the results of their individual efforts to make an impact. With the advent of the Internet and widespread broadband connection, however, it is now possible to efficiently join with others to act collectively – pooling global resources and talents to solve problems too big to solve alone. This is the power of collective knowledge, creativity, and commitment in a connected age. This is what Cisco believes as we consider, plan, and execute our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities.

One way in which Cisco works collaboratively to make a global impact is by participating in events like this week’s World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. Cisco is one of the strategic partners of the event and our Chairman and CEO, John Chambers, will be speaking as part of a panel addressing Leading through Adversity on Wednesday, January 23 from  9 to 10 a.m. (CET) (midnight to 1 a.m. PST/3 to 4 a.m. EST).

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The Explosive Evolution of Online Media

If any doubts remained about the soaring demand for online media, the London Olympics probably dispelled them.

With 217 million viewers in the United States alone, it was the most-watched television event in history. But it also illuminated the evolving habits of online consumers. For starters, two events—the women’s soccer final and women’s gymnastics final—accounted for more online viewership than all events combined during the 2008 Olympics. Tablet computers, particularly the iPad, are driving this trend.

These kinds of striking transitions in online media consumption were top of mind during two gatherings that I attended last week. The first was a roundtable discussion of media executives in Hollywood, which I moderated; the other was a World Economic Forum Industry Partnership Strategy Meeting in New York, focused on media entertainment and mobility.

It was a privilege to be around such industry brain trusts and to share research from Cisco IBSG. Here are four core topics of conversation that emerged: Read More »

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More than Talk at Davos: A Deep Dive by the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Infrastructure & Urban Development

In recognizing the need for new models for urban development, the World Economic Forum—which brings the world to Davos every January—has mobilized a multi-stakeholder team to find alternatives. Nic Villa, global director in the Cisco® Internet Business Solutions Group Public Sector practice, was recently named to this year’s Global Agenda Council for Infrastructure & Urban Development (GAC), a team of 15 experts and industry leaders drawn from around the world. This group is dedicated to exploring and identifying transformational models for infrastructure and urban development (I participated as a member in last year’s GAC).

By offering the case study of Shenzhen, Cisco IBSG contributed an outstanding example to the new “Urban Anthologies: Learning from our Cities” a user-friendly toolkit developed by the GAC to empower mayors, urban leaders, and private sector decision makers who are seeking to transform cities and communities. The tool highlights not only the physical outcomes of the projects but, most important, the catalytic and enabling factors that make these transformations possible (see chart below).

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