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New Network Readiness Index Report Reveals Most Future-Ready Societies

December 18, 2019


Contact:  Dr Jim Poisant M: +1 703 728-4547 E:


Fairfax, VA:  The World Information Technology and Services applauds today’s publication of the 2019 Network Readiness Index (NRI) report, ranking the network readiness of 121 economies based on their performance across 62 variables. Initially launched in 2002 by the World Economic Forum, the NRI has been redesigned in 2019 to reflect how technology and people need to be integrated within an effective governance structure in order to have the right impact on our economy, society and the environment.

Recognizing the pervasiveness of digital technologies in today’s networked world, the Index is grounded in four fundamental dimensions: Technology, People, Governance and Impact. This holistic approach means that the NRI covers issues ranging from future technologies such as artificial intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) to the role of the digital economy in reaching the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The 2019 NRI is being released by the Portulans Institute, a Washington D.C. based technology and innovation think tank, in collaboration with WITSA.  “WITSA sincerely appreciates being selected as a 2019 NRI, Knowledge Partner.  We consider this report to be critical for Global ICT development,” said WITSA Chairman Yvonne Chiu.  

According to 2019 NRI, the three countries most likely to reap the benefits of the digital future are Sweden, Singapore, and the Netherlands. The study also reveals that the United States and other Northern and Western European countries are among the world’s most future-ready societies because of their success in combining technological opportunities and human wellbeing. “Technology today is not regarded as it was twenty years ago. Its social, environmental and organizational impacts should be perceived to be at least as important as its economic potential”, notes Bruno Lanvin, the 2019 NRI Co-Editor and Co-Founder of the Portulans Institute.

However, other regions do not fare as well. One concern that arises from the continued investment by high-income countries in their technology infrastructure is the persistence of a technological divide at the global level.

The report also warns that the positive impact of technologies will not be achieved unless we are able to set up effective governance mechanisms to integrate technology with the three key stakeholder groups – individuals, businesses, and governments. The report also found clear evidence that technological innovation can be a powerful tool to achieve the SDGs.

Given the strong performance and growth of the ICT sector, WITSA believes that it is imperative that nations do all they can to help ensure the ICT sector is thriving in their respective countries. To do this, there must be a comprehensive ICT infrastructure in place, governments must embrace the power of ICT to transform the delivery of public services, entrepreneurship should be encouraged and supported, and there has to be a strong focus on equipping the next generation with the necessary ICT skills. It is clear those industries harnessing ICT effectively tend to achieve much higher growth rates than those which do not.

ICT matters not just because of its economic impact, but also because of the way it enables positive social and cultural change. ICT can help to break down social barriers between nations and significantly within nations. It is clear that ICT is not only central to tackling the challenges of today; it should also be seen as a critical instrument to help tackle the challenges of tomorrow. For the future prosperity of all economies across the world, it is therefore essential that the digital opportunity is seized.

“As the evolution of the Digital Age unfolds, it is imperative that the requirements to derive maximum benefit from ICT be clearly understood and benchmarked for nations to measure progress”, stated WITSA Secretary General Dr. Jim Poisant.  “The NRI report serves as a beacon that illuminates the path to success in this new Age.”

“Digital Technology is reshaping the global economy and producing an improved growth model”, said WITSA Deputy Chairman Mr. Yannis Sirros. “It is critical that all nations fully engage and adapt to the evolving Digital Age in order to take advantage of all of its benefits. In order for this new age to create maximum global benefit it must be applied everywhere”, continued Mr. Sirros. “The Networked Readiness Index report provides an excellent, comprehensive view of what is required by nations to fully realize the benefit of ICT for their societies. As WITSA’s longest standing director, I am very proud of WITSA for being selected as a Knowledge Partner of this impactful report.”

Starting on December 18th, the 2019 NRI complete report can be downloaded here, the Executive Summary here, or you can choose to navigate it at  The NRI December 18th global launch is hosted by Portulans Institute and WITSA at the Global Governance Centre at the Graduate Institute Geneva.

 Press contact:

For WITSA: Dr Jim Poisant M: +1 703 728-4547 E:

For the NRI 2019:

 About WITSA:

The World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA) is the leading recognized international voice of the global ICT industry, whose members from over 80 countries and economies represent more than 90 percent of the world ICT market. WITSA’s vision is “Fulfilling the Promise of the Digital Age.” When everyone on earth has access and is benefiting from ICT, WITSA’s vision will be realized. WITSA is dedicated to advocating policies that advance industry growth and development; facilitating international trade and investment in ICT products and services; strengthening WITSA’s national industry associations; and providing members with a broad network of professional contacts.

WITSA members are leaders in a globally interconnected marketplace. Because the challenges facing the ICT industry are undisputedly global in nature, WITSA members work together to achieve a shared vision on important issues of common interest. WITSA makes it possible for its members — ranging from Mongolia and Argentina to Kenya and the United States — to identify common issues and priorities, exchange valuable information, and present a united position on industry issues. For more information on WITSA, please visit