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Developmen t Connections Unveiling the Impact of New Information Technologies Development in the Americas, 2011 1

ICTs on top of the world? Courtesy: Richard Webb 2 How far behind is LAC? Source: DIA (2011).

3 What is the return? 4 What do we do? Very little is known, no data, were closing

gap. First systematic study on impact Nearly fifty projects studied all over Latin America (randomized controlled trials) Many research teams involved

5 Projects Undertaken 14.00% 18.00% 12.00%

18.00% 18.00% Labor Education Institutions Health Finance Environment

20.00% 6 Do ICTs work? 22.00% 39.00% Minimal Link

Strong ICT - Link 39.00% Partial ICT - Link Not a Silver Bullet 8

Human capital, Infrastructure, Regulations Technologies do not magnify the positive, only. 9

Successful Examples 10 Savings Reminders Bolivia Clients who received monthly reminders saved 6% more than individuals who did not Reminders that mentioned a specific future expenditure of the individual increased his/her savings by 16%

11 Internet-based Sex Education in Colombia Significant improvements in sexual knowledge and attitudes (STD prevention, condom use, pregnancy prevention and sexual violence/abuse) Kids are more able to identify safe and risky sexual practices, STD symptoms and violent/abusive

sexual situations More importantly, behavioral change: teenagers initiate sexual activity later and have fewer sexual partners Reduction in pregnancies, from 2.2% to 1.3% 12 Government Efficiency and Computers in Bolivia

Use of ICT to improve efficiency in the issuance of national ID cards Productivity of computer use (as opposed to typewriters) increases by more than one third ICT cannot do it all: success rates of indigenous women is much lower either because of discrimination, ignorance, or bureaucratic delay) 13

Lessons of Successful Cases 14 Do you Want to Win Soccer Games? 15 What we Learned Access is different from Use

Resources are limited Complementarities are crucial Cooperation: Public-private partnerships 16 Thats why they work better in some areas than in others Finance Labor

Institutions Health Environment Education 0 10 20

30 40 50 60 Percentage of projects with strong, partial or minimal ICT link ICT and Sectoral Impact: Minimal ICT link

ICT and Sectoral Impact: Partial ICT link ICT and Sectoral Impact: Strong ICT link 17 Do consider evaluation! (or the elephant -cow- in the room) 18 In summary,

The potential is there. ICTs are not an end. Not a silver bullet Cost-benefit: Newer is not always better Start small, evaluate, and then go big. 19 20

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