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A lot is being said about the need for New Zealand to be a digital economy. In New Zealand we are generally fast adopters of new technologies which can make us agile and avid users. It also means that if you feeling left behind by these new technologies the gap can widen at a quick rate.

Just moving to a digitized system does not automatically make it better for everyone but an approach that aims to bring everyone along is the ideal.

The New Zealand Productivity and Australian Productivity Commissions have created a joint research report called Growing the Digital Economy in Australia and New Zealand: Maximising Opportunities for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).  The report finds that "Digital technologies have had significant impacts, both good and bad".

It also found that "to maximise the benefits and minimise the harms of digital technologies, government should:

  • set regulations to be nimble and technology neutral
  • use digital technologies to improve government services
  • work together to further reduce barriers to regional and global trade."

In 2017, the Rand Coorperation published the report Digital Learning Education and skills in the digital age. This report gives an overview on the role and future of education and skills in the digital world. The report also highlights the "role reversal in the digital age" where young people are more familiar with technology than parents and grandparents. This can change the traditional role of the teacher to a guide or mentor pointing the students in the correct direction.

Each report can build on the other so that education can help build a stronger digital economy.