Subject The article reviews modern priorities of digital transformation of the economy and issues arising from the performance of the digitization program in regions, illustrating the case of the Republic of Dagestan. Objectives We outline methodological approaches to defining the digital economy and identifying opportunities, risks and threats of digitization, and suggest how digital projects should be performed in regions. Methods We delved into relevant scientific proceedings on the development of the digital economy and its constituents, processing of the Russian State Statistics Service’s data and operational information of respective ministries and agencies in Dagestan. The study relies upon methods of observation and collection of facts, analysis and synthesis, methods of economic-statistical analysis. Results We conducted the systems analysis to examine the conceptual framework for the analyzable issue, presented our own interpretation of the term Digital Economy and investigated the state and preparedness of the Russian economy for the digitization. We also spotlight challenging aspects causing the digital gap between the country and leading States. The article describes digital threats arising from the digitization of the society. The State should support the development of the digital economy and grant more tax breaks to innovation companies. The article stresses the creation of a sustainable regulatory framework, an increase in ICT literacy of people, motivation and the need to use digital technologies in everyday life. There were determined regional distinctions and risks of digitization. We comprehensively analyzed the development of ICT in the region and suggested how Dagestan can catch up with the pace of digitization in other regions. Conclusions and Relevance There should be a governmental center for national digitization management, which would contribute to the creation of the relevant institutional environment. The government should encourage the development of digital technologies, ensure the staff training and preparation of the infrastructure in regions so as to eliminate the digital disparity of regions.
Keywords: digital economy, Internet, information technology, region
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