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Weaving the Western Web: explaining differences in Internet connectivity among OECD countries

By Eszter Hargittai

Abstract

Despite the Internet's increasing importance, there is little social scientific work that addresses its diffusion. Our knowledge is especially limited with respect to the conditions that encourage its spread across nations. This paper takes a first step in explaining the differences in Internet connectivity among OECD countries. After examining the impact of economic indicators, human capital, institutional legal environment, and existing technological infrastructure, the empirical analyses show that economic wealth and telecommunications policy are the most salient predictors of a nation's Internet connectivity.Internet Global diffusion Connectivity International network

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