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date: 04 December 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores the claims about the social and economic benefits and disadvantages of digital infrastructure investment. The differences between economists' and other social scientists' viewpoints affect the ways in which the outcomes of these industrial policy initiatives might be evaluated. The chapter concentrates on Europe and North America. The Digital Agenda is one of several pillars in the 2020 strategy. The data in support of industrial policies and regulatory measures to promote information and communications technologies (ICTs) and broadband networks appears strong. Investment in ICTs will produce productivity growth. The strategies of the large content-providing firms and the network operators affected the opportunities proposed by the availability of the Internet. There are signs that in both Europe and the United States, research has added to the realisation that ICTs are general purpose technologies, and that they are capable of contributing to extensive and pervasive changes in the economy and society.

Keywords: digital infrastructure, industrial policy initiatives, Europe, North America, Digital Agenda, ICTs, general purpose technologies

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