E-commerce and Economic Development in Libya
University of Wales
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This thesis develops a conceptual framework of the drivers and barriers to e-commerce adoption in developing countries such as Libya. One of the main drivers of economic development is technology. Technology adoption usually results in rapid economic growth, and rapid economic growth is usually accompanied by rapid structural change. It is now widely accepted by policy makers that e-commerce is at the centre of an economic and social transformation that is affecting all countries. E-commerce creates new economic and social landscapes. E-commerce enables producers in developing-country to overcome traditional business limitations. The research process involves a mixed research approach. Firstly, 15 semi-structured interviews were conducted involving decision makers, government officials, managers and general employees regarding e-commerce and economic development in Libya. Secondly, a questionnaire was distributed across a population of 150 Libyan Internet users on a face-to-face basis. There are many drivers and barriers to the adoption of e-commerce. Most issues (competition, cost, employment, economic development, government, infrastructure, legislation and regulation, payment system) could be drivers or barriers. These issues created the theoretical framework. All issues were examined in Libya, the research findings confirmed the effects of these issues on e-commerce adoption. Moreover, the research findings resulted in an amended theoretical framework by introducing two new issues (knowledge and security). Additionally, the literature on e-commerce drivers and barriers issues has been expanded. The thesis concludes with a plan of action to assist Libya’s government on e-commerce adoption. The plan of action is driven by four main actors (Government, technologically advanced countries, companies and e-commerce users). These four actors and the plan of action comprise the three-quarter moon model that encourages the fourth actor (e-commerce users) to complete the circle of adoption. The thesis concludes that the three-quarter moon model can be generalized to other developing countries and proposes a classification model for e-commerce adoption along with a formula of Internet involvement. The classification model classifies countries according to their technological advancement. The new classification groups countries into non-technologically advanced, less-technologically advanced and technologically advanced.
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