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The evolution of the spatial digital divide : from internet adoption to internet use by french industrial firms

  • Galliano, D.
  • Roux, P.

In this paper, we concentrate on different aspects of the spatial digital divide and seek to answer three questions : Are there still spatial inequalities in the adoption of these technologies ? Is there a so-called "second level" geographical divide characterized by important differences in the intensity of Internet use between firms that have adopted these tools ? Do the appropriation processes and logic of diffusion of ICT adopters vary according to the type of area in which they are located (urban vs. rural areas) ? To answer these questions we have constructed and original model of technological diffusion (of the type developed by Battisti and Stoneman, 2005) that merges two types of models : those that concentrate on epidemic effects, and the so-called equilibrium models that model the decision to adopt new technologies as the result of an economic calculation by firms which depends on their internal characteristics and those of their competitive, industrial and local environment. This model uses data drawn from a recent national survey (ICT and e-commerce, 2002). One of the main results is that, for a given size and sector, altouhough there no longer are spatial inequalities in terms of ICT adoption in France, there are still important inequalities in firms' processes of ICT appropriation and use. ...French Abstract : Dans cet article, les auteurs se concentrent sur différents aspects de la fracture numérique spatiale et cherchent à répondre à trois questions : Existe-t-il encore aujourd'hui des inégalités spatiales dans l'adoption de ces technologies ? Existe-t-il une fracture spatiale dite de second niveau caractérisée par une faible utilisation d'Internet et du mail par des entreprises ayant pourtant adopté ces outils ? Peut-on observer des processus d'appropriation et/ou des logiques de diffusion distincts parmi les entreprises adoptantes selon leur zone de localisation (urbaines vs. rurales) ? Pour y répondre les auteurs ont construit un modèle original de diffusion de technologies (de type Battisti et Stoneman, 2005) qui cherche à combiner les modèles se concentrant sur les effets de la contagion et ceux dits d'équilibre modélisant la décision de l'adoption comme le résultat d'un calcul économique des agents en fonction de leurs caractéristiques propres et de celles de leur environnement concurrentiel, industriel et local. Ce modèle est testé sur une enquête nationale récente (TIC et commerce électronique, 2002). L'un des principaux résultats est que si, à taille et à secteur des entreprises donnés, des inégalités spatiales liées à l'adoption des TIC ne sont plus à l'oeuvre en France, elles demeurent en revanche toujours très importantes dans les processus d'appropriation et d'usage de ces technologies par les firmes.

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Paper provided by French Institute for Agronomy Research (INRA), Economics Laboratory in Toulouse (ESR Toulouse) in its series Economics Working Paper Archive (Toulouse) with number 200513.

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Length: 29 p.
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rea:inrawp:200513
Contact details of provider: Postal: INRA ESR - BP27 - 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France
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Web page: http://www.toulouse.inra.fr/esr
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