The ICT productivity paradox: insights from micro data


Pilat, D. (2004). The ICT productivity paradox: insights from micro data. Economic Studies No. 38, 2004/1. Paris: OECD.

Work data:

Type of work: Report


Economics | Information Society




Empirical analysis of the economic impacts of information and communications technology (ICT) has followed three main tracks, namely analysis with aggregate data on ICT investment, with data on ICTproducing and ICT-using industries, and with firm-level data. Firm-level data point to factors influencing the impacts of ICT that cannot be observed at the aggregate level, e.g. organisational factors or the availability of skills. Firm-level data can also point to competitive effects that may accompany the spread of ICT, such as the entry of new firms, the exit of firms, and changes in market share of existing firms. This paper summarises some of the findings on the impacts of ICT that emerge from firm-level studies, primarily pointing to evidence that has been extracted from firm-level data in recent OECD work on ICT, productivity and economic growth. The paper also briefly discusses why firm-level evidence may lead to different findings from evidence extracted at a more aggregate level.