Jasna Soldić Aleksić, Biljana Jovanović Gavrilović, Rade Stankić

DOI Number
First page
Last page


The application of information and communications technologies (ICTs) in all spheres of human activities has a significant impact on the development of each country. A better understanding of the relationship between these phenomena can contribute to the policy of a more balanced and long-term sustainable development on the national level. In this regard, the aim of the paper is to investigate the link between ICT and development profiles, taking the European countries as an example. We use several composite indexes (i.e., the ITU ICT development index, the global competitiveness index [GCI], and the Legatum prosperity index [LPI]) to investigate these countries’ profiles and find a common structure among their respective relationships. We applied the partial least squares regression (PLS-R) model and included a new welfare index – the prosperity index, which integrates all the key dimensions of country development (economic, social, and environmental). Our main finding is that PLS-R models successfully extract important information on common structure vis-à-vis the observed countries’ ICT and development profiles. Certain ICT indicators – namely, Use of ICT and Price of ICT services – can be considered predominant indicators, given their impact on a set of competitiveness and prosperity features within a country. These ICT indicators influence certain competitiveness attributes - Technological readiness, Business sophistication, Institutions, and Innovation, and certain prosperity attributes - Governance, Economic quality, and Personal freedom of the observed countries. These observations may be of great importance, as policy-makers can leverage them when designing the appropriate ICT and development strategies at national level.


ICT country profile, development country profile, European countries, PLS-R Methodology, national development strategy

Full Text:



Abdi, H., Chin, W.W., Vinzi, V.E., Russolillo, G. & Trinchera, L. (Eds.) (2013). New Perspectives in Partial Least Squares and Related Methods, Springer Proceedings in Mathematics & Statistics Book 56, New York: Springer Science+Business Media.

Alderete, M. V. (2017). Examining the ICT access effect on socioeconomic development: the moderating role of ICT use and skills, Information Technology for Development, 23(1), 42-48.

Ayanso, A., Cho, D. I., & Lertwachara, K. (2014). Information and communications technology development and the digital divide: A global and regional assessment. Information Technology for Development, 20(1), 60–77.

Avgerou, C. (2017). Theoretical framing of ICT4D research. In J. Choudrie & S. Islam (Eds.), Information and communication technologies for development (pp. 10–23). New York: Springer.

Bastien, P., Vinzi, E.V, Tenenhaus, M., (2005). PLS generalized linear regression, Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, 48, 17-46.

Cioacă, S.I., Cristache, S.E., Vuță, M., Marin, E., Vuță, M. (2020). Assessing the Impact of ICT Sector on Sustainable Development in the European Union: An Empirical Analysis Using Panel Data. Sustainability 12, 592.

Gligorić, M., Jovanović Gavrilović, B., Savić, Lj. (2018). Prosperity index as a measure of wellbeing in European union and Western Balkan countries, Teme, XLII(4), 1253-1275.

Haenlein, M., & Kaplan, A. M. (2004). A beginner’s guide to partial least squares analysis. Understanding Statistics, 3(4), 283–297.

International Telecommunication Union (ITU) (2017a). Measuring the information society report 2017, Vol. 1. ICT country profiles. Geneva: ITU International Telecommunication Union.

International Telecommunication Union (ITU) (2017b). Measuring the information society report 2017, volume 2. ICT country profiles. Geneva: ITU International Telecommunication Union.

Kowal, J., & Paliwoda-Pękosz, G. (2017). ICT for global competitiveness and economic growth in emerging economies: Economic, cultural, and social innovations for human capital in transition economies. Information Systems Management, 34(4), 304–307. htps://

Kowal, J., & Roztocki, N. (2013). Information and communication technology management for global competitiveness and economic growth in emerging economies. The Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries, 57, 1–12.

Krstić, B, Stanojević, J, & Stanišić, T., (2016). Innovations as a determinant of competitiveness of Serbia: a comparative analysis with Western Balkan countries and the European union, Teme, XL(3), 1035-1050.

Legatum Institute (2018a). The Legatum prosperity index 2018: Methodology report. Creating pathways from poverty to prosperity. London, UK: Legatum Institute.

Legatum Institute (2018b). The Legatum prosperity index 2018: Country profiles, 12th edition. London, UK: Legatum Institute.

Maitra, S., & Yan, J. (2008). Principle component analysis and partial least squares: Two dimension reduction techniques for regression [Discussion paper]. CAS Spring Meeting of the Casualty Actuarial Society (pp. 79–90). Retrieved from:

Perović, D. & Radukić, S., (2017). Comparative analysis of sustainable development components for the Republic of Serbia and neighbouring countries, Teme, XLI(3), 747-765. 10.22190/TEME1703747P.

Qureshi, S. (2015). Are we making a better world with information and communication technology for development (ICT4D) research? Findings from the field and theory building. Information Technology for Development, 21(4), 511–522.

Rothe, F. (2020). Rethinking positive and negative impacts of ’ICT for Development’ through the holistic lens of the sustainable development goals, Information Technology for Development, 26(4), 653-669.

Savulescu, C. (2015). Dynamics of ICT development in the EU. Procedia Economics and Finance, 23, 513–520.

Sein, M. K., Thapa, D., Hatakka, M., & Saebo, Ø. (2019). A holistic perspective on the theoretical foundations for ICT4D research, Information Technology for Development, 25(1), 7-25,

Skaletsky, M., Soremekun, O. & Galliers, R.D. (2014). The Changing – and Unchanging – Face of the Digital Divide: an Application of Kohonen Self-Organizing Maps, Information Technology for Development, 20(3), 218-250.

Tenenhaus, M. (2004). PLS Regression and PLS Path Modeling for Multiple Table Analysis, COMPSTAT 2004 Proceedings in Computational Statistics (pp. 489-499). Berlin: Physica-Verlag, Springer.

Tenenhaus, M., Pagès, J., Ambroisine, L., & Guinot, C. (2005). PLS methodology for studying relationships between hedonic judgements and product characteristics. Food Quality and Preference, 16(4), 315–325.

Tjoa, A. M. & Tjoa, S. (2016). The Role of ICT to Achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). In: Mata, F.J. & Pont, A. (Eds.) ICT for Promoting Human Development and Protecting the Environmemnt, WITFOR 2016, (pp. 3-13), IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology, Vol. 481, Berlin: Springer, Cham.

Trlaković, J., Despotović, D. & Ristić, L., (2018). Comparative analysis of the sustainable development indicators of the Western Balkan countries and certain EU countrie, Teme, XLII(2), 485-501.

United Nations (2001). Road Map Towards the Implementation of the United Nations Millennium Declaration: Report of the Secretary-General, New York: UN.

United Nations (2015). Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda For Sustainable Development, New York: UN.

Walsham, G. (2017). ICT4D research: Reflections on history and future agenda. Information Technology for Development, 23(1), 18–41.

World Bank (2003). ICT and MDGs: A world Bank Group Perspective, Washington: DC, World Bank.

World Bank (2016). Digital Dividents, World Development Report, Washington: DC.

World Bank (2019). Information and Communications for Development 2018: Data Driven.

Development, World Development Report, Washington: DC.

World Bank (2020). Europe 4.0, Addressing the Digital Dilemma, Washington: DC.

World Bank (2020a). World Development Report 2021, Data for Better Lives, Concept Notes,

May 2020.

World Economic Forum (2017). The global competitiveness report 2016–2017. Geneva: WEF.

World Economic Forum (2018). The global competitiveness report 2017–2018. Geneva: WEF.

XLSTAT Addinsoft software, ver. 2019.1.3., Addinsoft Inc., New York, N.Y. USA.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

© University of Niš, Serbia
Creative Commons licence CC BY-NC-ND
Print ISSN: 0353-7919
Online ISSN: 1820-7804