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Title: Essays in economics of digitization
Author: Uriz-Uharte, Guillermo
ISNI:       0000 0005 0288 6666
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2020
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While neoclassical economics implicitly assumes that [perfect] information is widely available to firms and decision makers, the crude reality is that imperfect and asymmetric information is ubiquitous in markets and organizations. In fact, economists have showed that information plays a central role in understanding the determinants of numerous economic outcomes. The rise of information technology in the last decades has dramatically lowered the costs of collecting, using, and passing information, originating the eruption of the Information Age. These three essays contribute to the understanding of the impacts of digitization on the development and functioning of economic institutions. Chapter one studies how a reduction in firm internal communication costs, coming from the adoption of new communication technologies, helps large corporations to achieve higher levels of innovation by overcoming limitations in internal organization. Chapter two evaluates the impact of an unprecedented Big Data information service, that diffused at zero cost by a large bank, provides information about the competitive environment of the firm. This program presents a unique opportunity to study how access to market information might impact small and medium size firms’ performance and strategic decision-making. Results show how adopting establishments are able to increase revenues by (i) targeting unexploited business opportunities and diversifying their customer portfolio, and (ii) streamlining resource allocation. Chapter three analyses the implementation of a driving-restriction policy in the city centre of Madrid known as Madrid Central. By restricting access by car to the ban-affected area, Madrid Central achieved its goal of reducing pollution levels in the city centre. However, this can come at the cost of increasing transportation costs for consumers, and discouraging consumption in the area. Results show how information technology, in the form of e-commerce adoption, allowed establishments in the ban-affected area to weather the situation and compensate the decrease in brick and mortar sales with an increase in online sales.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available