Ireland ranked in 25th place for exploitation of ICT

Singapore named best country in World Economic Forum survey

Ireland has been ranked 25th out of 143 economies in a new study that ranks countries on their ability to exploit information and communication technology to drive social and economic transformation.

The World Economic Forum’s Networked Readiness Index ranks Singapore as the top country in the world in terms of using ICT in place of Finland, which had been number one since 2013. Sweden, the Netherlands and Norway round out the top five economies in the index, while Chad came bottom.

Last year Ireland was ranked in 26th place overall in the rankings.

The Networked Readiness Index forms part of the World Economic forum’s wider Global Information Technology Report.


Ireland was in 8th place in the Skills subcategory based on the quality of the country’s education system and its secondary education enrolment rate. It came in 13th place in the business and innovation environment sub index, with its score dragged down by low rankings for venture capital availability, intensity of local competition and Government procedure of advanced technology products.

Ireland ranked 14th overall for its political and regulatory environment, polling well in terms of judicial independence and intellectual property protection but poorly in terms of the number of days it takes to resolve a dispute.

The country was ranked 15th in terms of economic impacts, 22nd for business usage, 26th for infrastructure and digital content, 33rd for Government usage and 38th for social impact. Ireland’s worst placing was in the affordability sub index where the country was placed in 87th spot due largely to mobile tariffs and broadband prices.

Data from the Networked Readiness Index suggests that the gap between the best and worst performing economies is widening.

The report shows that progress by the world’s larger emerging markets towards networked readiness has been largely disappointing. The Russian Federation was the highest-placed BRICS nation, climbing nine places in 2015 to 41st. It was joined in the top half of the ranking by China, which remained at 62. All other members of the group have declined, with South Africa declining five place to 75th, followed by Brazil, down 15 places to 84th spot and India, down six places to join Brazil in 84th place.

"The report shows that the digital divide across nations is increasing and this is of great concern, given the relentless pace of technological development. Less developed nations risk being left further behind and concrete actions are needed urgently to address this," said Soumitra Dutta, Anne and Elmer Lindseth Dean at the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University and co-editor of the report.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist