Implementing the Digital Economy Kit

 

The Digital Economy Kit has been implemented in several countries. These countries differ in terms of population, level of development, and political environment. This page contains the final results of these processes, as well as supporting materials and reflections from coordinating teams.

During the development of the Digital Economy Kit in 2019, the kit was tested with pilot processes in Ethiopia, Mongolia and South Africa. The lessons from these countries have shaped the final kit, and these early-movers were vital to test and refine the core issues and approach of the kit, as well as its flexibility and adaptability.

The Digital Economy Kit provides a flexible framework that can be adapted to meet the needs of the country using it. Each of the three pilot countries ran a unique process, with a different structure and timeline.

Timeline of the three pilot countries

 

South Africa

In South Africa, the Digital Economy Kit was implemented as an initiative called SADA (South Africa in the Digital Age). SADA was steered by a small advisory board of industry leaders, academics and public sector representatives. The SADA process took an “opportunity-first” approach to implementing the kit, by first identifying concrete and scalable opportunities for job creation and economic growth, and using these concrete visions to structure dialogue.

The work was coordinated by Genesis Analytics, an economics consultancy, in partnership with the Gordon Institute for Business Sciences (GIBS), between January and October of 2019. The resulting strategy primer was submitted to the president’s Public Private Growth Initiative, as well as the Presidential Commission for the Fourth Industrial Revolution where it would inform policy making and public investment.

Core outputs
Digital Readiness assessment [download PDF, appendix]
Strategy primer [download pdf]

Additional documents
Appendix to Digital Readiness Assessment – detailed analysis [download PDF]
Dialogue process overview [download PDF]
Dialogue agendas [download PDF]
Strategy for globally traded services [coming soon]

Ethiopia

The Ethiopian Ministry of Innovation and Technology (MInT) aimed to produce a strategy primer for the role of technology in creating jobs and generating foreign exchange for the country. The process in Ethiopia took place alongside the telecommunications liberalisation discussions, so the coordinating team used prospective changes in the telecommunications sector as an opportunity to articulate a vision for all Ethiopians to benefit from digital transformation.

The ministry partnered with the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change to coordinate the Digital Economy Kit in Ethiopia from July 2019 (the process is still ongoing). Due to mixed success with previous large, multi-stakeholder national dialogues, the initiative started with a series of around 50 in-person consultations with leaders across government, the private sector and civil society. This was complemented afterwards with larger workshops to validate findings and create alignment between state-level priorities and federal agendas. 

Core outputs
Digital Readiness assessment [coming soon]
Strategy primer [coming soon]

Mongolia

Mongolia implemented the Digital Economy Kit to help formulate strategies for economic diversification away from mining, which is highly dependent on global commodity prices for coal and copper. Investment in human capital and digital connectivity present an opportunity for Mongolia to bolster value from agriculture, capitalise on rising demand for IT skills outsourcing, and create a vibrant startup ecosystem, thereby reducing dependence on mining.

In Mongolia, three key government agencies (led by the Cabinet Secretariat) worked with Access Solutions LLC, a policy consulting agency, to run a national policy process from April to September 2019. Their engagement of private sector actors as well as civil society into policy processes was unprecedented in Mongolia, and led to a robust shared vision of digitally enabled growth in Mongolia. The strategy primer was supported by actors across the society and economy, and was presented at a conference that was opened by the Prime Minister of Mongolia called Nomads in a digital age.

Core outputs
Digital Readiness assessment [download PDF]
Strategy primer [download PDF]

Additional documents
Dialogue briefing notes (in Mongolian) [coming soon]
Dialogue agendas [download PDF]

^