WED 2:30 PM Parallel Session: National Policy Issues


Full Report: The papers presented for the session “National Policy Issues” tackle the policy of very different issues in two different nations: ICT penetration in Colombia and Social multiracial integration in Malaysia


The paper Modeling Access to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for Assessing a Penetration Policy, by Sandra Lopez, Ana María Cardenas, Isaac Dyner, and Erik Larsen, was presented by Sandra Lopez. The article develops a model of access to Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) for increasing and understanding the complexity of this process and to assess policy for the penetration of such technologies in Colombia. The model is based on concepts of bounded rationality, i.e. the mental processing capacity and information availability are limited. It shows that some policies may increase the penetration of ICT when based on people’s opportunities and desires.


The paper Assessing The Level Of Unity And Integration In Malaysia Using The System Dynamics Simulation Model, by Yin Yap, was presented by its author. The paper details how the social capital plays an important role in enhancing the efficiency of political institutions and the economic performance of nations. Malaysia is a multiracial country with a population of twenty-two point two million. Indigenous people account for about twelve percent of the population and they are comprised of nearly thirty-seven ethnic and sub-ethnic groups. As such, the importance of maintaining a close social bond which encompasses national unity and integration is an important social agenda needed for a successful transformation of the Malaysian society both economically and politically. This study attempts to assess the level of unity and integration among the diverse ethnic communities of Malaysia on the basis of the hard economic variables extracted from the 1991 and 2000 Population and Housing Census Reports of Malaysia and a sample survey on the social capital of the ethnic communities. A system dynamic which integrates both the hard economic variables and the perceived social capital of the ethnic communities is constructed to simulate the scenarios based on different policy options in terms of an affirmative action plan. The hard economic variables are highest educational attainment, occupational hierarchy and participation in the industrial sectors, while the soft variable or the social capital component includes seven dimensions - trust, reciprocity, community efficacy, community integration, sociability, and quality of life. The former is based on secondary data analysis while the latter is captured through the field survey via structured questionnaires. The weighted aggregated selectivity ratios are computed for both the hard variables and the soft variables. These two ratios are aggregated to obtain the composite weighted aggregated selectivity ratios (CWAS) for each ethnic community. From the results obtained, strategies are suggested to address issues relating to unity and integration in Malaysia. The paper intends to describe how social capital can play an important role in enhancing the efficiency of the political institutions, and the economic performance of nations. 


Habib Sedehi


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