Network Readiness Index
BRUNEI'S Network Readiness Index (NRI) ranking is "significantly dragged down" by the country's low performance in non-ICT specific areas such as 'business climate' or the country's 'ease of doing business', experts said.
D&L Partners, a consultancy firm currently working with the Authority for Info-communication and Technology Industry (AITI)for the ICT White Paper "Hub Project: Phase II", said that improvements in Brunei's general business climate will have a significant impact on a number of NRI variables.
The key recommendations for improving Brunei's business climate include: identifying regulatory factors that have constrained ICT adoption; identifying and conducting analysis of cultural factors that impede ICT adoption; and conducting further research to explore issue of generation gap among users.
D&L explained in the white paper that the Hub Project (Higher, Upward Brunei), was created for the country to realise opportunities in four strategic areas: Leveraging; Leapfrogging; Leadership; and Lighthouse projects.
Phase II of the project builds on the output of Phase I, which was conducted in late 2010 and early 2011, and includes the assessment of Brunei's NRI performance since its inclusion in the index; country benchmarking; focus groups; and strategic recommendations.
"Some tentative action plan which will contribute to the improvement of Brunei's ease of doing business could come from the identification of specific areas where the impact of investments made in ICT would be significantly improved if measures were taken. For examples, regulatory reforms and legal improvements that are likely to enhance ICT adoption and usage," D&L said in the white paper.
It added: "Granting additional attention to the cultural issues related to ICT adoption, including the respective attitudes of different age groups towards ICT and related services could also be part of the tentative action plan."
D&L's white paper also noted that improvements in communication can produce an immediate impact in a small economy.
The recommendations under this communication cluster, are for Brunei to focus on connectivity in schools, communicating ICT issues using non-ICT vocabulary, and the have awareness campaigns on Fibre-To-The-Home (FTTH) benefits.
"Without understanding the vision behind FTTH and visualising the benefits and convenience they can enjoy in their normal social and work activities, citizens will unlikely make use of the new technology.
"Through informal campaigns that use non-technical vocabulary, they need to be informed about the practical benefits they can realise in their day-to-day lives with FTTH," the White Paper said.
Similarly, the business sector needs to be aware of the government's vision and commitment, as well as the upcoming phases of the national ICT infrastructure roll-out.
"Conversely, continued dialogue with the business community and sensitisation training will help government officials understand better what issues are currently important to businesses," it said.
Network readiness is an aggregate of factors that enable countries to benefit fully from ICT advances, and is a measure of ICT's sustainability in its economic, environmental, and social dimensions.
Brunei was ranked 54th out of 142 economies in the Global Information Technology Report's Network Readiness Index this year. Goh De NoThe Brunei Times
Friday, September 14, 2012
Network Readiness Index
Feel free to comment on this article using your Facebook account. By submitting your comment, you agree to the Terms and Conditions for the use of this comments feature, as stated here.