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ISociety2003n1_GlobalEComDiffusion_XCountryComparison - The...

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The Information Society, 19:5–18, 2003 Copyright c 2003 Taylor & Francis 0197-2243/03 $12.00 + .00 DOI: 10.1080/01972240390145661 Environment and Policy Factors Shaping Global E-Commerce Diffusion: A Cross-Country Comparison Jennifer Gibbs, Kenneth L. Kraemer, and Jason Dedrick Center for Research on Information Technology and Organizations (CRITO), University of California, Irvine, Irvine, California, USA This article examines the key global, environmental and pol- icy factors that act as determinants of e-commerce diffusion. It is based on systematic comparison of case studies from 10 countries— Brazil, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Mexico, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, and the United States. It finds that B2B e-commerce seems to be driven by global forces, whereas B2C seems to be more of a local phenomenon. A preliminary expla- nation for this difference is that B2B is driven by global compe- tition and MNCs that “push” e-commerce to their global suppli- ers, customers, and subsidiaries. This in turn creates pressures on local companies to adopt e-commerce to stay competitive. In con- trast, B2C is “pulled” by consumer markets, which are mainly local and therefore divergent. While all consumers desire convenience and low prices, consumer preferences and values, national cul- ture, and distribution systems differ markedly across countries and define differences in local consumer markets. These findings sup- port the transformation perspective about globalization and its im- pacts. In terms of policy, the case studies suggest that enabling poli- cies such as trade and telecommunications liberalization are likely to have the biggest impact on e-commerce, by making ICT and Received 1 August 2001; accepted 1 April 2002; in final form 1 September 2002. This research is part of the Globalization and E-Commerce Project of the Center for Research on Information Technology and Organiza- tions (CRITO) at the University of California, Irvine. The material is based on work supported by the National Science Foundation under grant 0085852. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommen- dations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation. This research has been supported by a grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation (CISE/IIS/DST) and is part of a multi- year, multicountry study being conducted with scholars from 10 partic- ipating countries. The authors acknowledge the helpful comments of T. J. Chen, Juan Palacios, Rolf Wigand, and the anonymous reviewers on an earlier version of this article. Address correspondence to Kenneth L. Kraemer, Director, CRITO, and Professor, Management and Computer Science, University of California, Irvine, 3200 Berkeley Place, Irvine, CA 92697-4650, USA. E-mail: [email protected] Internet access more affordable to firms and consumers, and in- creasing pressure on firms to adopt e-commerce to compete. Spe- cific e-commerce legislation appears not to have as big an impact, although inadequate protection for both buyers and sellers in some
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