5-year Productivity Inquiry: Australia’s data and digital dividend - interim report

Skilled workforce Productivity Labour force productivity Digital transformation Technology economic aspects Australia

Productivity growth is about harnessing our ingenuity to do more with the resources we already have — working smarter, not harder — and investing in the latest technology and the best ideas.

The Productivity Inquiry focuses on the enablers of productivity growth in a modern, market-based, service-oriented world. The second interim report explores how digital technology and data can be used to improve Australia’s productivity.

Key points:

  • Digital technology and data have the potential to significantly improve Australia’s productivity.
  • Digital technology and data use has steadily increased for much of the past decade, as more businesses and consumers recognise the benefits of digitisation.
  • Businesses face benefits and costs from adopting digital and data tools that likely vary based on characteristics such as their size and industry. This could explain the variation in the rates at which technologies diffuse across the economy, and may affect dispersion in business performance.
  • Compared to other developed countries, Australia does well on basic measures of technology and data uptake, but is falling behind on more advanced uses. This could limit future productivity growth.
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