What Drives ICT Diffusion in Developing Countries? Evidence from Paraguay

21 Pages Posted: 4 Apr 2011

See all articles by Sebastian Vergara

Sebastian Vergara

Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)

Matteo Grazzi

Inter-American Development Bank

Date Written: August 2, 2008


The diffusion of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) has been identified by international policy-makers and scholars as an important driver for economic development. In this perspective, research on the determinants of technology adoption appears particularly relevant. However, while the empirical literature on ICT adoption in workplace is relatively abundant, few studies have been elaborated on their penetration in households. Additionally, academic work has focused on industrialized countries and it is still missing a comprehensive analysis on developing world. In this paper we contribute to fill this gap, evaluating the main socio-economic determinants of the presence of computer and Internet connection in Paraguayan households. Non-parametric statistics show that Paraguay has relatively low levels of ICT penetration. Moreover, technology diffusion follows a heterogeneous pattern, reflecting pre-existing inequalities in other socio-economic dimensions. Econometrically, we model the probability that a household has or has not adopted computer technologies and Internet access. The results confirm that conventional variables such as income and education are key determinants of ICT diffusion, but there is also evidence of the presence of geographical network effects and of complementarities between Internet use at different locations.

Keywords: Computer adoption, Internet access, Sample selection, Paraguay

JEL Classification: L63, O33, O54, C24

Suggested Citation

Vergara, Sebastian and Grazzi, Matteo, What Drives ICT Diffusion in Developing Countries? Evidence from Paraguay (August 2, 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1801507 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1801507

Sebastian Vergara (Contact Author)

Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) ( email )

Av. Dag Hammarskjöld 3477
Santiago, 7630412

Matteo Grazzi

Inter-American Development Bank ( email )

1300 New York Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20577
United States

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