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Manuel Fritsch / Karl Lichtblau IW-Trends No. 1 15. March 2021 The Digital Economy in Germany: Limits of Data Availability and First Estimates

For many years now an OECD working group has been developing and coordinating an internationally comparable quantification of the economic effects of digitalization. However, the practical value of this initiative is limited by the nature of the available data.

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Limits of Data Availability and First Estimates
Manuel Fritsch / Karl Lichtblau IW-Trends No. 1 15. March 2021

The Digital Economy in Germany: Limits of Data Availability and First Estimates

IW-Trends

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For many years now an OECD working group has been developing and coordinating an internationally comparable quantification of the economic effects of digitalization. However, the practical value of this initiative is limited by the nature of the available data.

A definition and measurement of the US digital economy based on the OECD proposal was published in 2018 by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), a US statistical agency. Applying the same approach to data from the German national accounts suggests that in 2016 the digital economy contributed 5.7 per cent of Germany’s gross domestic product. While this is significantly less than the 7.8 per cent measured by the BEA for the USA, the difference is partly due to the measuring strategy adopted. This is because the BEA’s approach primarily captures the value added of the information and communication technology sector plus services of a particularly digital nature such as e-commerce. This focus on enablers of digitalisation and products that would not be possible without it fails to take account of digital value creation in traditional business models. In a survey based on the IW Future Panel which included the proportion of digital value creation contributed by additional products, services and especially processes, companies in Germany estimated that an average of around 22.5 per cent of their 2020 turnover was digital. To obtain a comprehensive picture of how digitalised business has become, it will be necessary to address the lack of data specifically on the digitalisation of processes.

 

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Limits of Data Availability and First Estimates
Manuel Fritsch / Karl Lichtblau IW-Trends No. 1 15. March 2021

Manuel Fritsch, Karl Lichtblau: Die digitale Wirtschaft in Deutschland - Grenzen der Datenverfügbarkeit und erste Schätzungen

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Henry Goecke / Christian Rusche IW-Trends No. 3 7. September 2021

A Coronavirus Shock for the Retail Sector in German City Centres

The Corona pandemic and the measures taken to contain the virus have delivered an asymmetrical shock to German business. This asymmetry is exemplified by the effects on the retail trade, an import ant part of the nation’s economy.

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Manuel Fritsch / Karl Lichtblau Expertise 15. March 2021

The Digital Economy in Germany: Data Availability and Initial Estimates

In a satellite account, a specific horizontal area of the economy is extracted from the System of National Accounts (SNA) and modelled as a separate product or industry group (satellite). The term “satellite” refers to the chosen subsets of sectors or economic ...

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