Growth Jobs and Prosperity in the Digital Age

Conference looks at how the OECD shapes the policy environment for ICTs

Diego Molano Vega, Colombia’s minister of information technologies and communications, was among the speakers at the conference.
Diego Molano Vega, Colombia’s minister of information technologies and communications, was among the speakers at the conference.

New York, March 10, 2014 – Policies affecting the development and use of information and communications technologies (ICTs) are evolving quickly around the world. At the same time, ICTs now constitute a fundamental building block for global growth, competitiveness and job creation.

This was the backdrop for a major conference today in Washington, D.C. Growth, Jobs and Prosperity in the Digital Age: OECD Shapes the Policy Environment, held at the Microsoft Innovation & Policy Center, was organized by the United States Council Foundation (USCIB’s educational arm), together with BIAC, the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the OECD itself.

Participants discussed how emerging technologies create the potential for greater efficiencies, new business opportunities, economic growth and job creation, as well as risk-based approaches to privacy and security. They also considered the trade policy dimension, including how cross-border data flows are regulated under existing trade rules, and how this could change. And they considered the contributions of the OECD, including in its 2008 “Seoul Declaration,” in helping to shape Internet and ICT policies that support growth, innovation and broad societal benefits.

“The multi-stakeholder approach is a linchpin of the OECD’s work on ICTs and the Internet,” said Andrew Wyckoff, director of the OECD’s Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry. “This approach has served to inform our role as a shaper of international dialogue, as a provider of comparative cross-border data and evidence, and as a forum for sharing experiences and collective learning.”

Wyckoff, appearing via video from Paris, reflected on the OECD’s role in creating policy consensus among governments, business and the wider Internet community. He said the OECD’s Internet Policy Making Principles represent a “common philosophical approach” to Internet policy making. “This is essential,” he said. “This is where growth will come from in the decade to come.”

Wyckoff joined a roster of speakers from government, industry and the OECD reviewed the latest technological and policy developments in digital privacy, big data, cloud computing and other emerging technologies, and considered how these could be leveraged by policy makers to achieve maximum growth, innovation and employment. These included: Diego Molano Vega, Colombia’s minister of information technologies and communications; Commissioner Julie Brill of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission; and Liesyl Franz of the U.S. Department of State’s cyber issues office.

“As work to revive our economies continues, the digital economy provides a powerful tool to improve productivity, increase innovation and growth, as well as create new jobs,” said Jorgen Abild Andersen, chair of the OECD’s Committee on Digital Economy Policy. “The OECD is committed to bringing together governments and key stakeholders to develop policies to support a flourishing digital economy.”

Joseph Alhadeff vice president and chief privacy officer with Oracle Corp., who serves as chair of BIAC’s Committee on Information, Communications and Computer Policy and vice chair of USCIB’s ICT Policy Committee, said: “In light of recent economic developments, it is understandable that policy makers are taking a renewed look at how best to ensure ICTs can continue to meet broad economic and societal needs. This program served to underscore the important role that OECD policy frameworks and economic analysis play in providing needed facts and guidance that assist both business and regulators in developing the policies that help foster continued growth and evolution of the global digital economy and information society.”

About USCIB:

USCIB promotes open markets, competitiveness and innovation, sustainable development and corporate responsibility, supported by international engagement and regulatory coherence. Its members include U.S.-based global companies and professional services firms from every sector of our economy, with operations in every region of the world. With a unique global network encompassing leading international business organizations, including BIAC, USCIB provides business views to policy makers and regulatory authorities worldwide, and works to facilitate international trade and investment. More at www.uscib.org.

About BIAC:

Founded in 1962 as an independent organization, the Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD (BIAC) is the officially recognized representative of the OECD business community. BIAC’s members are the major business organizations in the OECD member countries and a number of OECD observer countries. More at www.biac.org.

Contact:

Jonathan Huneke, USCIB

+1 212.703.5043, jhuneke@uscib.org

More on USCIB’s Information, Communications and Technology Committee

Staff Contact:   Kira Yevtukhova

Deputy Director, Marketing and Communications
Tel: 202.617.3160

Kira Yevtukhova manages USCIB’s print and online publications, including the website, e-newsletter and quarterly magazine, and serves as the organization’s digital media strategist. Prior to this role, Kira worked for over five years within USCIB’s Policy Department, focusing on climate change, environment, nutrition, health, and chemicals related policy issues. She is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and is currently pursuing an MBA at Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business.
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