October 29, 2012

The Web Index tells us the value of innovation

Economy

The Web Index tells us the value of innovation

The Web is good for society. This is what the World Wide Web Foundation tells us, according to whom it is also possible to determine just how good. The Foundation – created by the “father” of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee – has developed the Web Index (here): an index that measures how different countries are able to profit from the advantages and benefits of an open and global Web.

Top of the ranking is Sweden, and it is not by chance that it is the first country in the world preparing to make all economic transactions paperless. The US and the UK follow, then Canada and Finland. In general, Western countries dominate the top 20, with one exception: Italy in 23rd place, between Mexico and Brazil.

The Web Index, which is based on a total of 80 parameters, shows unequivocally that thanks to the Web, it is possible to improve quality of life, reduce conflict, and develop the governance of countries.

The positive effects are from the most disparate of fields: from employment to financial services, from access to more comprehensive and pluralistic information through to medical services, not to mention increased contacts and connections between people.

Moreover, there is another aspect worth thinking about. It is in fact clear that the major Web innovations should realistically come from so-called “digital natives”, i.e. the generation of under thirties for whom the Internet is their natural habitat. However, it is that same generation who, according to youth unemployment data, are finding it harder to find a place in the world of work and to exploit their potential.

A paradox, in short: the labour market is missing precisely those who should be its natural protagonists. Because it is from them that the energy and ideas we need to build a prosperous future must come.

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