In the global financial system the economic strength, competency, and development of national economies and populations is significantly affected by the availability and use of Information Communication Technology (ICT). While the wealthier, industrialized nations enjoy the widest availability and use of these key technologies, the capacity and access to ICT is limited in developing nations and least developed countries (LDCs). Consequently, the lack of technology in many Southeast Asian countries may contribute significantly to their status as underdeveloped nations with impoverished economies and populations. This study explores the extent to which key social, economic, ethnolinguistic and infrastructure indicators outlined in the model for determining factors that contribute to digital divide proposed by Kallol Bagchi (Bagchi, 2005, Factors contributing to global digital divide: Some empirical resutls) contribute to digital distance. Furthermore, this study compares the performance of these indicators in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) for the years 2003 and 2005. The study concludes that the majority of factors tested correlated to digital distance for both the OECD and ASEAN nations and that the performance of these factors was consistent for both years studied. However, differences in the effect of the level of secondary education, inflation, and degree of urbanization were also observed between the two groups of nations and opportunities for further research presented.
Hornback, Patricia, "Digital Distance and Economic Development in Southeast Asia" (2011). Faculty Publications - Department of Professional Studies. Paper 4.