Internet-based technologies are rapidly changing the way in which businesses, consumers and governments interact with each other. The extent to which this transformation is taking place is leading some to conclude that the digital economy is not only the future of our economy, it is the economy. Goods and services are being digitised, not only in how they are developed, but also in how they are delivered and consumed, transforming how the economy works, and how individual sectors, such as health, education, security, finance, and even governance, work.
Some refer to the process as “digital DNA” – how information and communications technologies have become the underlying driver that is changing business models, the way in which the economy and government work, and the way people live. At one level it is about how billions of everyday online connections among people, businesses, devices, data and processes are being connected, re-connected, and constantly interacting – in a word, hyperconnectivity. It is about converting things in the physical world to a piece of information, a digital representation. But to convert the physical to the digital, requires having the basic infrastructure: affordable, open and safe hyper-connected access.
How should we define the digital economy and what are its policy implications? MARI PANGESTU and PETER LOVELOCK provide an Asia-Pacific perspective.
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