Sweden has overtaken the USA, with Norway in third place, in the new Connectivity Scorecard report, created in 2008 by London Business School professor Leonard Waverman.
A strong contributory factor for Sweden’s advance in technology use is the so-called PC-reform launched at the end of the 1990s. Swedish households were then given the right to purchase their home computers on preferential terms through their employers.
“When the reform arrived more than 80 percent of the population gained access to a home PC. Since then Sweden has been an the forefront with regards to new technology,” said David Larsson at IT Research.
Following the home PC reform the rapid expansion of Sweden’s broadband network, including the 3G mobile networks, has further established Sweden as the world’s leading IT nation.
David Larsson believes that Sweden can still improve – within mobile telecommunications for example.
“We are at the top there also. Even if we will never get 100 percent coverage across the country – the geographical distances are too great – I think we can get above 90 percent,” he said.
In last year’s survey Sweden came in second behind the USA. But according to the 2010 report, there is little risk of Sweden being pushed back off its perch.
“By contrast there is the beginning of a gap in what was once the essence of US leadership in most industrial and service sectors,” Leonard Waveman said in a statement on the Connectivity Scorecard website.
The new report, commissioned by Nokia Siemens Networks, surveyed 50 countries which are divided into Resource-driven and Innovation-driven economies.
Of the Resource-driven countries, Malaysia topped the list with a connectivity score of 7.14, followed by South Africa and Chile.
Of the Innovation-driven economies, Sweden leads on 7.95, followed by the USA on 7.77 and Norway on 7.74. The other Nordic countries make up the top six, along with the Netherlands.