The shift from analogue to digital information technology started more than half a century ago with the invention of the first computers. Over the last two decades, the rapid decline in computing costs, the emergence of the internet as a communication tool and the proliferation of day-to-day applications on the internet have profoundly affected the organisation of businesses and personal life, and the functioning of the economy. It has brought many benefits to consumers and businesses. However, it has also created new problems and policy issues.
Policy makers struggle to put in place appropriate policy responses; economists and social scientists also struggle to develop new tools and datasets that can address these issues.
The Digital Economy research programme aims to address some of these economic policy issues for the EU. Its main focus is on:
Previously, some research has been carried out on the impact of digital technology on employment, and on consumer benefits from the internet. Click here for more information on related research.