Mapping the European knowledge base of socio-economic impact studies of information society technologies

The primary objective of the project EKB-SEIS was to increase the usability of socio-economic research for the European policy and RTD communities. Its result is a web-based database, complemented by a background report, which facilitate access to research on socio-economic aspects of ISTs.

Important lines of socio-economic research on ISTs in Europe that are also relevant to policy making and to RTD strategies have been summarized within five thematic chapters:

  1. Conditions for Innovation in ISTs
  2. ISTs, Organisational Change and Work Processes;
  3. ISTs and User Behaviour;
  4. Societal Dimensions of ISTs; and
  5. IST-related Policy Instruments.

Each chapter offers an assessment of the state of affairs on a number of sub-themes ('problematiques'), a description of different schools of thought and recommendations for future research.

The ITA collaborated in this ESTO project with a number of other TA institutions under the leadership of TNO–STB, Institute of Strategy, Technology and Policy (Delft, The Netherlands). ITA's focus was on the societal dimensions of ISTs on which we worked together with ITAS. The results of the analysis cover the following problematiques:

  • (i) public sector innovation and state reform,
  • (ii) privacy,
  • (iii) science and research in the digital age,
  • (iv) digital divide,
  • (v) gender issues and
  • (vi) e-commerce.



  • Aichholzer, G., Cas, J., Nentwich, M., Peissl, W., Winkler, R., & ITAS,. (2004). Chapter 4: Societal dimension of ISTs, In: Burgelman, J.-C., Tuomi, I., Punie, Y., van Bavel, R. (Ed.), Mapping the European Knowledge Base on Socio-Economic Impact Studies of Information Society Technologies (EKB-SEIS), Technical Report EUR 21375 EN, European Commission, DG JRC, Seville: Institute for Prospective Technological Studies.
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  • 04/02/2004
    Georg Aichholzer: 
    Mapping the European knowledge base of socio-economic impact studies: societal Dimensions of ISTs
    Workshop “The European Information Society in 2010: Key socio-economic research challenges”, IPTS – DG JRC, Brussels, 4-5 February
    Other Lecture
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06/2003 - 02/2004


  • Georg Aichholzer