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The ICT Development Index

Created to measure the level of development of the information and communication technology sector (ICT), the ICT Development Index (IDI) is a composite indicator published by ITU from 2009 until 2017. It was discontinued in 2018, owing to issues of data availability and quality. More information available here​

In October 2022, ITU’s Plenipotentiary Conference 2022 in Bucharest adopted a revised text of Resolution 131. This new text (Rev. Bucharest, 2022) defines, inter alia, the main features of the process for developing and adopting a new IDI methodology and of the IDI itself. Consistent with the urgency imposed by Resolution 131, the objective is to launch the IDI in 2023.  

In this context, and in line with instructs 8 to the BDT Director, the Secretariat prepared a Zero draft docu​ment​, which describes a possible framework and structure for the IDI, to inform, facilitate and expedite the process. This document was posted on a discussion forum​ dedicated to the new IDI (IDI Forum), where members of the Expert Group on ICT Household Indicators (EGH) and of the Expert Group on Telecommunication/ICT Indicators (EGTI)​were invited to share feedback on the draft methodology, comments and suggestions. More than 200 members signed up for the IDI Forum and almost 100 comments were posted. A document with a compilation of all the comments received on the content and the respective responses from the ITU Secretariat was produced and posted on the IDI Forum. 

The Zero draft document was revised in light of the comments received to produce a Version 1 document, which also contained additional proposals related to the treatment of outliers, aggregation and weighting. A compilation of all the comments received and the Secretariat’s responses to each of them were appended as Annex 4 to the Version 1 document. 

In Circular BDT/DKH/IDA/009​ of 21 April 2023, Member States were invited to comment on the Version 1 document, as per instructs the Director of the Telecommunication Development Bureau 7 of Resolution 131. The period of consultation for Member States ran from 21 April 2023 to 19 May 2023. Fourteen Member States submitted a total of 71 comments. 

Based on the comments received, the Secretariat updated the Version 1 document and produced a Version 2 document. Annex 4 of that document features a compilation of the comments submitted by Member States on the Version 1 document and the Secretariat’s responses to each of them. 

Following these consultations, the ITU Secretariat identified a number of outstanding issues, which were presented in the Version 2 document (and summarized in text boxes labelled ‘Issues for discussions at the IDI meeting’). These outstanding issues were discussed at the virtual joint meeting of EGTI and EGH from 13 to 15 June 2023 (Circular BDT/DKH/IDA/007 of 21 March 2023). The report​ of the meeting was posted on 27 June. 

Following the meeting, the Secretariat updated the methodology to reflect the outcomes of the meeting and produced Version 3 of the methodology. 

In June 2023, during the 30th meeting of the Telecommunication Development Advisory Group, the ITU Secretariat provided an update about the ongoing process (see Addendum 2 Annex 3 of Document 2). In July, during its 2023 session, ITU’s Council noted the developments and requested that an additional meeting be organized ahead of the final consultation of Member States. Accordingly, a joint EGTI/EGH session on the IDI was held on 18-19 September during the annual meetings of EGTI and EGH, with the aim of concluding the elaboration of the methodology (Circular letter BDT/DKH/IDA/013​ of 3 August 2023). 

Following this meeting, the IDI methodology, the Version 3 document was finalised, now called Version 3.1​, has been submitted for approval by Member States. The methodology will be adopted if 70 per cent of responding Member States approve it, as per Resolution 131. After this consultation, Member States will also have the possibility to opt out from the 2023 edition if the methodology is approved.

More information​ about the history of the IDI. 
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