Weblog on the Internet and public policy, journalism, virtual community, and more from David Brake, a Canadian academic, consultant and journalist
12 September 2012

I’m all in favour of attempts like that of the World Wide Web Foundation to make in their words “multi-dimensional measures of the Web’s growth, utility and impact on people and nations” but to call it the “first” such attempt would seem to be overlooking the strikingly similar ITU “Measuring the Information Society” programme or The World Economic Forum’s “Network Readiness Index” (there are and have been probably others too). There’s plenty of room for all though and each group of scholars has something to contribute (indeed the Web Index draws from ITU figures among others). If you are interested in the digital divide, check them all out!


  1. Indeed, not to mention the ITU’s “ICT Opportunity Index” which came out of the 2nd phases of WSIS. It had twenty-one indicators but I would argue it failed to develop any to assess citizens’ capabilities to use the internet in ways that they value. This effort seems to be much more comprehensive and more about use and impacts and thus far more useful I would say. I appreciate that they are drawing from many long-term ongoing studies including those from the human rights sector. I think the framing of readiness, impact and use seems good and the diverse indicators allow for much more critical reflection. I’m impressed.

    Comment by tanya — 12 September 2012 @ 12:28 pm

  2. also realised today how many countries are missing….most I think. That’s a real limitation of the Web Index. Visualisations are quite lovely, however.

    Comment by tanya — 13 September 2012 @ 12:39 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment