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Global Digital Economy Innovation

[Harvard University]


"The Rise of the New Digital Economy:  

Trends, Opportunities, and Challenges"


Digital and Infrastructure


"Developing New Economic and Business Models that are Digitally Driven, Creating Sustainable Value for an Inclusive Economy." -- [World Economic Forum]

Digital technologies and services have proven to be enablers of sustainable development and inclusive growth. They can be key to improving lives even in the poorest countries, especially through empowering women and girls, strengthening democratic governance and transparency, and increasing productivity and job creation. 

Connectivity also involves infrastructure and connecting regions and cities. Building roads, tunnels or bridges to connect citizens to healthcare, markets, jobs and schools can fundamentally improve the lives and livelihoods of rural communities. These connections will create new opportunities across the region. Poor infrastructure can hinder a country's growth and ability to trade in the global economy.


- A Brief History of The Modern Internet

On October 29th, 1969, a message was sent from a room at UCLA in Southern California to a Stanford Research Institute computer console in Menlo Park, California. It read simply “Lo,” though it was supposed to say “Login.” The system crashed before completing the task. This was the world’s first message sent via an interconnected computer network known as ARPANET. On this unassuming fall day, the modern Internet as we now know was conceived. 

In the five decades since, the Internet has transformed human existence. From how we wage war to how we make each other laugh, it’s unfathomable how much the Internet has shaped life in that short amount of time.  

Today, comparing the Internet to electricity as it becomes an “omnipresent utility, something we expect to always be available and around us, intertwined in our daily lives. 

The world in front of us will be a mix of reality and the virtual and, at times, it will be unable to decipher which one is which. In the near future, everyone will wear augmented reality (AR) glasses and use that to interact with their environment. Information will be displayed, floating in the air, the web will appear in the real world, not just on glass screens. 

Real-time information will forever be present for everything - and everyone - you cross paths with. Strangers will be identified, with increasingly detailed information about them presented, people will subscribe to different augmentations, much as we now subscribe to magazines.


- New Media - An Increasingly Virtual World

New Media is a 21st Century catchall term used to define all that is related to the Internet and the interplay between technology, images and sound. In fact, the definition of new media changes daily, and will continue to do so. New media evolves and morphs continuously. What it will be tomorrow is virtually unpredictable for most of us, but we do know that it will continue to evolve in fast and furious ways.  

Digital technologies underpin innovation and competitiveness across private and public sectors and enable scientific progress in all disciplines. ICT and Digital Media are now integrated into almost every technology, industry and job. New media are forms of media that are native to computers, computational and relying on computers for distribution. Currently, some examples of new media are websites, mobile apps, virtual worlds, multimedia, computer games, human-computer (brain) interface, computer animation and interactive computer installations.  

Our world has become smaller thanks to the digital age, whether spoken or written word. In the near-future, typing messages will go away in favor of verbal and auditory communications, much like what’s already been introduced in Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa.

Today, more than 5 billion consumers interact with data every day - by 2025, that number will be 6 billion, or 75% of the world's population. In 2025, each connected person will have at least one data interaction every 18 seconds. Many of these interactions are because of the billions of IoT devices connected across the globe, which are expected to create over 90ZB of data in 2025.

- The Evolution of the New Economy: The New Digital Economy 

The world is changing fast. Technology has permeated every aspect of modern life, both personal and professional. We are at the dawn of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which will bring together digital, biological and physical technologies in new and powerful combinations. Rapid developments in technology and science are changing the way we live, work and do business. These changes come with challenges for our industries, work places and communities. Digital technologies have immense potential to drive competition, innovation and productivity.

Innovation in the business world is accelerating exponentially, with new, disruptive technologies and trends emerging that are fundamentally changing how businesses and the global economy operate. For example, emerging technologies are disrupting the communications industry by enabling new business models and bringing new customer experiences. The digital ecosystem encourages cross industry collaboration and facilitates bundled digital product offerings in a hyper-connected world accelerating the digital journey of telecom companies. Today, most business professionals spend almost every waking second of their day either interacting with a computer or carrying one on their person - and many people even sleep tethered to a computer via wearable devices that track activity and sleep patterns.  

Today’s new digital economy is forcing organizations to think faster, more openly and more flexibly. By understanding emerging digital ecosystems, businesses can implement strategies that differentiate the customer experience and drive competitive advantage. The strategies for succeeding in the knowledge economy are predicated on the notions that knowledge and information are costly to generate and can be protected. It makes sense to build your enterprise’s competitive differentiation around its knowledge capital only if that information is unique to the firm. 


[Paris Skyline, France - Llnur Kalimulin]

- What is the "New" Digital Economy (NDE)?

The New Digital Economy (NDE) is emerging from a combination of technologies, mainly from the ICT (Information and Communications Technology) space, that are becoming pervasive across mechanical systems, communications, infrastructure, and the built environment, and thus playing an increasingly important role, not only in social and political life, but in research, manufacturing, services, transportation, and even agriculture.

The technologies underpinning the NDE, most importantly, include: advanced robotics and factory automation (sometimes referred to as advanced manufacturing); new sources of data from mobile and ubiquitous Internet connectivity (sometimes referred to as the Internet of Things); cloud computing; big data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI). 

The rise of new digital industrial technology, known as Industry 4.0, is a transformation that makes it possible to gather and analyze data across machines, enabling faster, more flexible, and more efficient processes to produce higher-quality goods at reduced costs. This manufacturing revolution will increase productivity, shift economics, foster industrial growth, and modify the profile of the workforce—ultimately changing the competitiveness of companies and regions. 


- The Main Driver of the New Digial Eneocomy

"The main driver of the New Digital Economy (NDE) is the continued exponential improvement in the cost-performance of information and communications technology (ICT), mainly microelectronics, following Moore’s Law. This is not new. 

The digitization of design, advanced manufacturing, robotics, communications, and distributed computer networking (e.g. the Internet) have been altering innovation processes, the content of tasks, and the possibilities for the relocation of work for decades. 

However, three features of the NDE are relatively novel. 

  • First, new sources of data, from smart phones to factory sensors, are sending vast quantities of data into the “cloud,” where they can be analysed to generate new insights, products, and services. 
  • Second, new business models based on technology and product platforms - platform innovation, platform ownership, and platform complimenting - are significantly altering the organization of industries and the terms of competition in a range of leading-edge industries and product categories. 
  • Third, the performance of ICT hardware and software has advanced to the point where artificial intelligence and machine learning applications are proliferating. 


What these novel features share is reliance on very advanced and nearly ubiquitous ICT, embedded in a growing platform ecosystem characterized by high levels of interoperability and modularity.


[More to come ...]

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