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The ICT Development Index

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The ICT Development Index (IDI) is a composite index that until 2017 combined 11 indicators into a composite score. It is used to monitor and compare developments in information and communication technology (ICT) between countries and over time. The IDI was published from 2009 to 2017. 

In March 2017, an extraordinary meeting of the Expert Group on ICT Household Indicators (EGH) and Expert Group on Telecommunication/ICT Indicators (EGTI) adopted a revised set of 14 indicators to be included in the IDI.  

However, following the shift from 11 to 14 indicators, countries were facing challenges in collecting and submitting quality data. For the calculation of the 2018 IDI for example, 58 per cent of the data points would have to be estimated. Furthermore, there were issues with the harmonization and quality of the data used, and the methodology applied to derive some of the newly adopted indicators. Because of these flaws it was not possible to compute a methodologically sound index that reflects the true state of ICT development. 

Since 2018, attempts either to publish the IDI in line with Plenipotentiary Conference (PP) Resolution 131 (Rev. Dubai, 2018) or to develop an entirely new index have been unsuccessful, as no consensus could be reached within the Expert Group on Telecommunication/ICT Indicators (EGTI) and the Expert Group on ICT Household Indicators (EGH). 

At a virtual consultation in June 2021, ITU’s Administrative Council –the Union’s governing body in the interval between Plenipotentiary Conferences– agreed that further discussion and any decision regarding the future of the IDI should be deferred to the next Plenipotentiary Conference. Consequently, no index will be published until further notice. 

The 2017 edition of the IDI was published in the Measuring the Information Society Report 2017 and the results are still accessible via the IDI visualisation tool. Those results, however, are largely outdated, considering the rapid evolution of the ICT landscape. Users should therefore exert extreme caution when using the results and drawing conclusions about the current state of digital development of a country.  

For data and insight about the current state of digital development and trends, users are encouraged to consult the Digital Development Dashboard, the flagship publications Facts and Figures, ICT Price Trends, and our statistics portal

More information​ about the history of the IDI.