Benchmarking IT 2009 by The Economist

More interesting points of the research, who compares 66 countries in the IT industry field.

  • With economic global recession even bigger IT firms are cutting back investments in R&D
  • USA remains the world’s most conducive environment for the development and growth of IT firms, despite a tougher business environment and the emergence of protectionist impulses. Canada and west European countries such as Finland, Sweden and the Netherlands are also prominent in the index top tier, owing to their robust IT infrastructure and strong support for technology R&D, among other factors.
  • Broadband    networks    are    becoming    increasingly    essential    to    IT    firms’    competitiveness.    Broadband’s importance will grow as more IT services and applications are delivered over the Internet. Technology producers in broadband-rich countries in western Europe, North America and developed Asia are clearly at an advantage in this respect. Conversely, the slow march of broadband in emerging markets, including those with large IT sectors such as India, Brazil and Russia, could impede their IT firms’ growth.
  • Finland has risen to 2nd in the index based mainly on its strong performance in the R&D environment category, particularly patents, and improvement in its overall business environment.
  • Spain with  score  47.4 went down 2 positions, from 25 to 23 respect last year.
  • Without a good supply of local talent, countries are unlikely ever to develop competitive IT sectors. For all the IT graduates being churned out of Asian economies, there are still concerns that education systems in the region put too much focus on pure IT skills and not enough on IT in a business context. Top schools in the US and Europe do better in this area. On the other hand, the US and Europe each face long-term challenges in cultivating the science and technical engineering skills of its younger students.
  • As more applications move off individual sites and into the “cloud”. The efficiency gains that will result from this development could benefit entire economies, but countries—and national IT sectors—that lack the broadband infrastructure needed to access these services will be left behind.

Bonus.This is related to broadband infrastructure in the world. It’s a world map of the cost of broadband Internet connection. The whole image here.