Digital technologies, from e-commerce to more efficient modes of communication, have been integral to economic growth and prosperity, but pre-digital era models and measurements fail to wholly understand its full impact. Understanding the impact of digital technology on workers, labour and the economy requires a new approach to capture the full range of economic activities that have taken place, and will take place.
This latest report, Just Out of Reach: The Elusive Quest to Measure the Digital Economy, explores the literature on the digital economy, focusing on how we have come to know what we do about technology’s impact on labour and the economy more broadly.
This report focuses on the approaches, frameworks, and specific measurements created to help conceptualize and measure the impact of technology, with specific attention to the ways technology either replaces labour or augments it. Using a method called a systematic review, our project team thoroughly reviewed, analyzed and synthesized 110 papers, reports, and other sources on how digital technology impacts labour.