IDN Readiness Arab States

Each of the countries in the case studies was evaluated across numerous indicators, which have remained consistent with last year and build upon research by ISOC, UNESCO and OECD. These seek to identify the “IDN Readiness” of a country or territory, as follows:

Country/Language factors

  • Level of linguistic and cultural homogeneity
  • Presence of Local Internet Exchange Points (IXP)
  • Broadband penetration (fixed and mobile)
  • Local language content
  • Size of population, and online population

ccTLD (local domain name) factors

  • Strength of local registrar network
  • Registration policies
  • Low prices
  • Strength of ccTLD brand

The IDN Readiness matrix was presented in the World Report on Internationalised Domain Names, 2012, which set out the rationale for each of the indicators. These include the significant correlation that has been identified between the development of network infrastructure and the growth of local content. The measure of “cultural homogeneity” is built up through a range of indicators on cultural diversity, net migration both in the general population and of students, international flows of selected cultural goods and services and where country data is present highlights from the World Values Survey.

The results are presented in the IDN readiness matrix (above), and help to explain why IDNs are doing comparatively well in some countries and not in others. It must be emphasised that this analysis makes no judgment on the countries or territories, ccTLD registries or any aspect of their operation.

The vertical axis reflects the summary of country/language factors. These reflect the macro-environment in which the IDN is offered. Some of the factors (linguistic homogeneity, cultural homogeneity) will be slow to move; others (broadband penetration, presence of IXPs, online population) can change quite rapidly, enabling mobility through the vertical axis.

The horizontal axis reflects the summary of the micro-environment that is the ccTLD registry, its policy, pricing, brand and crucially a network of local registrars. These are more readily affected than the country factors, and therefore it is foreseeable that individual countries or registries could have high mobility across the horizontal axis year by year. There are no significant movements from last year’s chart, as there have been no major policy changes in the registries within the sample.

Published in World Report on Internationalised Domain Names, 2014