Why do Ict technologies and the Internet find it hard to spread into industrial districts and favour knowledge exchange?

  • Giorgio Gottardi
Part of the Economics of Science, Technology and Innovation book series (ESTI, volume 29)


It is well known that Ict and Internet technologies, namely allwwwand e-commerce applications, enormously multiply the number of relationships that any agent can establish and hold. So, the intensity of such relations tends to grow, in terms of frequency of contacts and speed of information exchange. However, in order to exchange not just data, but also information and knowledge, we need not only technological infrastructures that use the same technical standards, but also common languages and interpretative codes. This last condition constitutes a serious restraint to the globalisation process that is in principle allowed by a worldwide utilisation of the Internet. If the environment is sufficiently large, we will encounter fundamental diversities, linked to the various cultures, languages and institutions that regulate social and economic relations. Today these heterogeneities, more than the enduring lack of global standards for the transactions (e.g. contracts, reliable systems of payment, etc.) impede the international development of e-commerce. This could bring us to admit that physical proximity is now, and could remain for long, a very important factor (Storper and Harrison, 1991;Rullani, 1995). In this perspective, the assumptions about the possible vanishing of physical distance, often associated with the advantages of open networks as the Internet is, could represent a fascinating Utopia.


Knowledge Transfer Tacit Knowledge Electronic Commerce Industrial District Network Economy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

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  • Giorgio Gottardi

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