[LINK] Obama, Brown eye IT for job creation

Marghanita da Cruz marghanita at ramin.com.au
Mon Jan 19 13:29:30 AEDT 2009

Does this mean a nationalisation of BT and the equivalent in the US?
Bernard Robertson-Dunn wrote:
> Obama, Brown eye IT for job creation
> Contractor UK
> 8 January 2009
> http://www.contractoruk.com/news/004141.html
> Given Barclays’ vow yesterday to make another 250 IT contractors 
> jobless, there is reassurance in the din of UK party leaders willing 
> forward the job creator that is super-fast broadband.
> Seeming to agree with Gordon Brown that the future is fibre, David 
> Cameron pledged his government would strive to offer the upgraded 
> broadband to British homes within a decade.
> The Conservative leader’s view effectively seals the consensus, in and 
> outside of Whitehall, that the PM’s vision to invest in a new network, 
> to usher in a “new digital age,” is the right one.
> The network, costing £29bn according to one industry estimate, would 
> come in a public spending package that Mr Brown said will create, 
> “probably”, 100,000 new jobs.
> An impressive-sounding number of jobs no matter what the state of the 
> economy and, argued Ovum analyst Peter Clarke, proof that Mr Brown has 
> an “exciting vision”.
> Clarke warned however that with major public projects taking up to two 
> years to procure, the process must accelerate if the network is going to 
> deliver any benefits in 2009.
> In the US, it is not just broadband that is preparing for a shot in the 
> arm to help the nation through recession, but also its entire digital 
> and IT infrastructure.
> Called to action yesterday, Congress was urged to devote $30bn (£20bn) 
> to the IT industry, as part of President-Elect Barack Obama’s proposed 
> $775bn economic stimulus package.
> The call, in a report entitled ‘The Digital Road to Recovery: A Stimulus 
> Plan to Create Jobs, Boost Productivity and Revitalise America’, claimed 
> 1m jobs could be created or retained.
> Sounded by ITIF, the hi-tech think tank, its president Robert Atkinson 
> explained why the tech industry was a more deserving recipient of 
> federal money than its traditional rivals.
> “Although projects to improve the country's traditional physical 
> infrastructure (e.g., roads, bridges, sewer systems) are necessary and 
> important, investments in certain parts of our national information 
> technology (IT) infrastructure - America's digital infrastructure - will 
> have a greater positive impact on jobs, productivity, and innovation.”
> ITIF estimates that the $30bn for America’s IT network infrastructure in 
> 2009 will create 949,000 jobs, 525,000 of which will be in firms with 
> fewer than 500 employees.
> The proposed spending should be divided evenly in three areas: 
> super-fast broadband networks, supporting 498,000 jobs, health IT, 
> supporting 212,000 jobs, and a smart power grid, supporting the remainder.
> “Investments in IT infrastructure should not be minimized out of concern 
> that the projects will take too long to begin to have an immediate 
> impact on the US economy,” Atkinson writes.
> “If the stimulus measures are designed properly, they can quickly spur a 
> large number of investments - from deploying more and faster broadband 
> networks to switching to electronic health records to rolling out 
> advanced energy metering technologies - that are 'shovel-ready.'”
> Investment in IT infrastructure offers “superior” levels of job creation 
> because it creates a ‘network effect’ – whereby “downstream industries” 
> enabled by it create add jobs.
> Atkinson added that new jobs that will emerge thanks to IT 
> infrastructure’s unique capability to spawn new applications and 
> services – “many manifested in entirely new industries and/or firms.”
> “With the US economy now mired in a deep, and potentially prolonged, 
> recession, increased investment is one of the best tools to stimulate 
> aggregate demand and quickly get American workers back on payrolls,” he 
> writes.
> “Spurring investments in IT infrastructure not only can provide an 
> important short-term boost to the US economy; it also can lay the 
> groundwork for long-term economic growth, international competitiveness, 
> and significant improvement in Americans’ quality of life.”

Marghanita da Cruz
Phone: (+61)0414 869202

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