Leveraging the Digital Transformation for Development: A Global South Strategy for the Data-Driven Economy

Policy Brief, Centre for International Governance Innovation

9 Pages Posted: 23 Apr 2019

See all articles by Dan Ciuriak

Dan Ciuriak

Ciuriak Consulting Inc.; Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI); C.D. Howe Institute; Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada; BKP Development Research & Consulting GmbH

Maria Ptashkina

Universitat Pompeu Fabra - Department of Economics and Business; International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD)

Date Written: March 24, 2019

Abstract

This policy brief tries to work out some of the implications for the Global South of the emergence of Industry 4.0 and the evolution toward a data-driven economy. The digital transformation provides developing economies new opportunities to leapfrog industrial age infrastructure, to draw on the vast knowledge spillovers from the internet, to take advantage of new markets enabled offered by digital platforms, and to exploit production possibilities enabled by digital technologies. It also increases the distance to the technological frontier as leading-edge countries race forward, creates new competitive challenges in capturing production mandates in tasks that can be automated, and poses daunting new governance challenges in managing the impact of digital technologies on cyber security, integrity of governance, industrial adjustment, preservation of competition, and cultivating trade and investment links to the global economy. Developing countries can leverage the valuable data they generate, given their population size, rapid adoption of mobile technology, and digital procurement potential, to improve the bargains they strike with advanced country suppliers and platforms and in trade negotiations. Despite its relatively vulnerable position in today’s fractured global environment, the Global South is not entirely without assets and options. The international financial institutions should support ambitious strategies aimed at leveraging the digital transformation for development.

Keywords: digital transformation, data-driven economy, industry 4.0, developing economies, Global South, economic governance, leapfrog economic development, knowledge spillovers, technology acquisition

JEL Classification: F63, O32, O47

Suggested Citation

Ciuriak, Dan and Ptashkina, Maria, Leveraging the Digital Transformation for Development: A Global South Strategy for the Data-Driven Economy (March 24, 2019). Policy Brief, Centre for International Governance Innovation, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3359243

Dan Ciuriak (Contact Author)

Ciuriak Consulting Inc. ( email )

83 Stewart St.
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6H9
Canada

Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) ( email )

57 Erb Street West
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 6C2
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C.D. Howe Institute ( email )

67 Yonge St., Suite 300
Toronto, Ontario M5E 1J8
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Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada ( email )

Canada

HOME PAGE: http://ciuriakconsulting.com/

BKP Development Research & Consulting GmbH ( email )

Romanstrasse 74
München, 80639
Germany

Maria Ptashkina

Universitat Pompeu Fabra - Department of Economics and Business ( email )

Barcelona
Spain

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.upf.edu/web/econ/phd-students

International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) ( email )

International Environmental House 2
Chemin de Balexert 7
Chatelaine, Geneva, GE 1219
Switzerland

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.ictsd.org/about-us/maria-ptashkina

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