Technology and Economic Growth in the Information Age: A Follow-Up

Issue Briefs | Economy

No. 180
Thursday, December 03, 2015
by Stevi Knight

In the 17 years since the NCPA published Michael Cox and Richard Alm’s report, “Technology and Economic Growth in the Information Age,” the technology landscape in the United States has changed dramatically, with a largely positive impact on the U.S. economy.

For example, 21 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth from 1996 to 2001 is attributable to the Internet, and the development of software used in almost all U.S. businesses accounted for 15 percent of all gains in U.S. output from 2004 to 2012. Future global machine-to-machine (M2M) technologies — devices able to network to other devices through the use of microchips, sensors and wireless communications — could contribute from $2.7 trillion to $14.4 trillion to the world economy by 2025. Cox and Alm’s 1998 prediction that the coming years would see a dramatic increase in technology advancing the economy and improving everyday life for the average American has come true.

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