Can Donors Improve Enterprise Competitiveness with ICT?

Competitive private companies know that just adopting the tools of ICT will not magically lead to productivity gains – it takes much change and investments in business processes to really reap the rewards that ICT can bring. But this basic tenant can be lost in the hype around specific devices or technologies.

So how can donor-funded projects that aim to increase enterprise competitiveness using ICT, make sure companies can take advantage of technological advances to create a sustainable advantage? Or even a strategic advantage.

ict business

In the November Technology Salon, we’ll get an exclusive sneak peak at “How Information and Communication Technology (ICT) can Catalyze Enterprise Competitiveness“, a brief from the Business Growth Initiative (BGI), that’s not yet released.

In our forum, we’ll be able to review and give our opinion on the brief’s ability to inform those who design and implement donor-led ICT projects through its four sections:

  1. A framework for supporting ICT as a tool to improve enterprise competitiveness for donor projects
  2. Examples of framework operation in agriculture/agribusiness, tourism, and manufacturing sectors.
  3. Lessons from donor-initiated ICT projects with greater impacts, more sustainability, and larger scale
  4. Recommendations to donors on creating better ICT-enabled business and competitive environments.

Please join us Thursday, November 19, for what will be a lively discussion around enterprise competitiveness and donor funding at the intersection of technology and development. We’ll be led by Michael Ducker, an ICT development specialist focused on supporting ICT, entrepreneurs and innovation.

Can Donors Improve Enterprise Competitiveness with ICT?
November Technology Salon
Thursday, November 19, 8:30-10am
UN Foundation Conference Room
1800 Mass Avenue, NW, Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20036 (map)

Do note that we’ll have hot coffee and Krispe Kreme donuts for a morning rush, but seating is limited and the UN Foundation is in a secure building. So the first fifteen (15) to RSVP will be confirmed attendance and then there will be a waitlist.

3 Responses

  1. Wayan Vota says:

    I hope this report does not say that a computer lab in a school can create ICT competitiveness, as World Emergency Relief suggests in this article:
    War Torn Burundi Sees Future In IT Outsourcing:
    [World Emergency Relief] said over 500 pupils from some of the poorest areas of city attend the Himbaza School – and the new IT suite goes some way to offering them a future. The charity believes that by giving more African children access to computers and the internet, the continent could potentially challenge India and Asia in the market for outsourced IT services and virtual admin tasks also known as crowd sourcing.
    I think it will take a bit more investment than this one intervention to make a Silicon Rift Valley

  2. Wayan Vota says:

    ICT as an industry for job creation in development is also questionable. Just check this recent OECD report:
    Employment in the ICT sector continues dropping
    In the 80 global ICT firms analysed for this report, there were year-on-job cuts of 1-2% in the first half of 2009. Semiconductor firms cut 4% of their jobs. Current announcements by ICT firms suggest that employment will drop by an additional 2-3% by the end of 2009. However, some niche ICT industries including green ICTs and cloud computing are promising to develop new ICT employment despite general job losses.
    ICT sector production and employment are both cyclical, but employment lags the production cycle. Despite the upturn in global sales of ICT goods, ICT employment may be slow to pull out of this recession as it has in the past.
    During the last recession, employment reached a peak in 2000-2001, bottomed out in 2003-2004 and only started growing again in 2005, considerably later than the pick-up in production and value added.

  3. Mike Ducker says:

    Wayan, Love the Tech Saloon thanks for letting me share technical note on ICT role in supporting enterprise Competitiveness. Any other feedback is welcomed and appreciated.