Campus & Community

Law School launches digital divide policy initiative

2 min read

Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society has announced a new project to create public policies that support digital entrepreneurship. The project, Open Economies, will support developing nations seeking to embrace digital technology and digitally enabled entrepreneurship as a means to economic development.

“We are focusing on the regulatory environment affecting small and medium-sized enterprises in developing nations,” said James Moore, a senior fellow at the Berkman Center and author of the best-selling book “The Death of Competition: Leadership and Strategy in the Age of Business Ecosystems.” “The idea is to build a virtual policy center to help developing nations create public policy that supports these enterprises.”

The Open Economies project will work with government and business leaders to design and implement policies that foster digital entrepreneurship around the world. The project received a grant from Hewlett-Packard as part of the company’s World e-Inclusion Initiative, which seeks business opportunities that extend information technology to the world’s developing nations and rural poor.

“The Open Economies project reflects the Berkman Center’s collaboration and hands-on approach. It aims to facilitate the engagement of previously excluded communities and groups in the creative process of dialogue and policy-making,” said Eric Saltzman, executive director of the center. “The project will enable us to both advance our research into Internet law and public policy, and contribute to bridging the digital divide.” “We aim to bring together academic, business, government, and nonprofit organizations and leaders to collaborate on advancing development goals,” added Moore. “We encourage all those interested in becoming a part of the project to visit us at our Open Economies Web site.”

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School is a nonprofit entrepreneurial research program founded in 1997 to explore and understand cyberspace. It recently partnered with Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard’s Center for International Development for “eDevelopment,” a multinational conference that brought together policy-makers to explore strategies for using information and communication technologies to spur economic growth in communities worldwide.

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