Global e-readiness rankings - UK takes 7th place

The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has issued its latest 2007 report into global "e-readiness". The ranking is designed to assess a country's information and communications technology (ICT) strengths. It's not just about connection speed, but the technologies used and how they're employed: Several new ranking criteria have been introduced to the e-readiness model in 2007, and primary categories have been changed. In addition, some individual criteria have been retired or had their weighting reassessed. We have refined our notion of connectivity. It remains a defining indicator of how a country’s population is able to access the Internet and digital channels; the more telephones and Internet accounts a country has, the easier that e-readiness is to achieve. But it is also true that certain types of connectivity are proving better than others in enabling e-readiness. Broadband Internet access enjoys greater influence in 2007—not only its penetration, but also its affordability to households. We have also eliminated fixed-line phones as an indicator and increased the weight of mobile penetration, as mobile phones are generally cheaper, easier to access and, with text messaging and mobile commerce applications, increasingly powerful digital devices. Another key refinement has come in our analysis of the part that legal structures play in creating e-ready economies. We have also placed greater emphasis on the role of governments in fostering digitalisation, both as providers of vision and policy direction, and also as creators of digital channels for their constituents. Lastly, we have re-focused the consumer and business adoption category to evaluate the utilisation of digital channels by individuals and businesses. We have also slightly increased its weight relative to connectivity and other categories in recognition of the fact that, ultimately, it is actual users who determine a country’s e-readiness, not its networks. So how do all these countries fair? Well, Iran holds 69th place far down at the bottom with an e-readiness score of just 3.08 out of 10. That's down from 65th during 2006. Meanwhile the UK has slipped to 7th place from 5th with 8.59 out of 10. The top 10 follows: 1. Denmark 8.88 2(tie). US 8.85 2(tie). Sweden 8.85 4. Hong Kong 8.72 5. Switzerland 8.61 6. Singapore 8.60 7. UK 8.59 8. Netherlands 8.50 9. Australia 8.46 10. Finland 8.43

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