ITU Digital Access Index: World’s First Global ICT Ranking

Various authors, International Telecommunication Union, Dec 03, 2003
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I'm sure it's not the "world's first" (the text explains why they think other rankings were not "global") but the results are nonetheless interesting as the survey combines the availability and affordability of communications technologies with an educational index. There are some flaws: countries with higher rates of informal learning, reflective of better internet access, will drop on the list, since the survey measures enrollments and not achievement. Also, the suggestion that internet access is 'more affordable' in the United States than Canada reveals another bias, since internet is actually considerably cheaper here than there. The survey uses 'lowest possible access cost' rather than typical cost, and the use of per capita income does not take into account greater social support (such as health care) in Canada. Nor does such an average take into account income disparities.
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