Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The Increasing Economic Value of Digital Capital

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A firm’s financial statement comprises two distinct types of assets. Tangible assets are mostly physical in nature, and include vehicles, land, plants, equipment, and furniture, as well as financial assets like stocks, bonds, account receivables, and cash which have a concrete contractual value.

The Current State of AI Adoption

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

For the past few years, McKinsey has been conducting a yearly online survey to help assess the state of AI adoption. The 2019 survey garnered responses from over 2,300 companies, and found that AI was becoming more mainstream, with nearly 80% of the responding companies using AI in some capacity.

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The Intriguing Nature of Non-Fungible Tokens

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The blockchain first came to light in 2008 as the digital ledger for bitcoin transactions. The blockchain creator’s original vision was limited to enabling peer-to-peer bitcoin transactions with no need for a bank or government agency to certify the validity of the transactions.

Buy 153

The Increasing Influence of Recommendation Systems in Our Everyday Lives

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A few years ago, I attended a seminar by University of Toronto professor Avi Goldfarb on the economic value of AI. Goldfarb explained that the best way to assess the impact of a new radical technology is to look at how the technology reduces the cost of a widely used function.

System 204

The Current State of Cloud Computing

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

In June, 2008 I gave a talk at a conference on The Promise and Reality of Cloud Computing. In his closing remarks , the conference organizer noted that most everyone had agreed that something big and profound was going on, but they weren’t quite sure what it was they were excited about.

Data 175

How Covid Is Reordering the Global Economy

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Issues 243

The Social Network Is the Computer

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“Human beings have always been a social species,” writes MIT professor Sinan Aral in the opening paragraph of The Hype Machine , his recently published book. “We’ve been communicating, cooperating, and coordinating with one another since we were hunting and gathering.”

Is Work-from-Anywhere Here to Stay?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Remote work has been around for a few decades, but took off in the mid-late 1990s with the explosive growth of the Internet. There were predictions that the Internet would lead to the decline of cities , because technology was making location less relevant to our work and personal lives.

Ten IT Predictions for the Post-Pandemic New Normal

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

How to Emerge Stronger in the Post-Pandemic New Normal

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“What now?,” asked a recent McKinsey article on the implications of Covid for business. “Over the past six months, they have reorganized supply chains, set up remote operations, and made tough financial decisions.

How To 212

What Is Objective Reality?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

I learned about The Constitution of Knowledge , - a 2018 National Affairs essay by author and journalist Jonathan Rauch , - from a recent OpEd by NY Times columnist David Brooks.

Issues 207

Building Better Jobs in an Age of Intelligent Machines

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

On November 18, the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future released its final report , The Work of the Future: Building Better Jobs in an Age of Intelligent Machines.

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AI Is Mostly About Business Value, Not Technology

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A few months ago, Babson College professor Tom Davenport convened a virtual meeting of chief data and analytic officers (CDAO) from a variety of industries to discuss how to best achieve a return on investments (ROI) in AI. “We

The Intangible Asset Revolution

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Why Business Transformation Efforts Often Fail

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A 2019 study found that the average digitization level across all industry sectors was only around 25% of their ultimate potential. But, t he pandemic has now made the case for accelerating the digital transformations firms and economies were forced to make to help them cope with the crisis.

Trends That Will Likely Shape a Highly Uncertain Year

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A few weeks ago The Economist published The World in 2021 , it’s 35th annual look at the economic, political, social and cultural trends that will likely shape the coming year.

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How Can Blockchain Become a Truly Transformative Technology?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

I first became interested in blockchain technologies when in 2016 the World Economic Forum (WEF) named The Blockchain in its annual list of Top Ten Emerging Technologies citing its potential to fundamentally change the way markets and governments work.

Why 70 Percent of Digital Transformations Fail

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“Companies either transform or die in industrial revolutions,” writes former P&G executive Tony Saldanha in his recently published book Why Digital Transformations Fail. “Digital transformation is our current generation’s attempt to transform in the face of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

New Directions for Government in the Digital Age

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Over the past few decades, economies and societies around the world have been going through historical transformations as they transition from the industrial age of the past two centuries to a 21st century digital age.

AI Technologies Are Fundamentally Changing How Work Gets Done

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

After decades of promise and hype, artificial intelligence is finally becoming one of the most important technologies of our era. AI technologies, like machine learning, are clearly having a major impact on the very nature of work.

What Is the Social Responsibility of Business?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

On September 13, 1970, the NY Times Magazine published an essay by University of Chicago economist and 1976 Nobel Prize recipient Milton Friedman - “ The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits. ” Friedman’s essay turned out to be one of the most influential ever published in the world of business.

Issues 184

The State of AI Adoption - High Performers Show the Way

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

For the past few years, the McKinsey Global Institute has been conducting a yearly survey to assess the state of AI adoption. Its 2017 survey of over 3,000 AI-aware executive found that outside the technology sector, AI adoption was at an early, often experimental stage.

The Evolution of American Capitalism - Tweaks, Reforms, or Wholesale Change?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“American capitalism has evolved time and again, and we may be poised for another such shift,” said a recent McKinsey article, Rethinking the future of American capitalism , by James Manyika , Gary Pinkus , and Monique Tuin. “Capitalism has contributed to significant gains in economic growth and prosperity throughout its history.

Change 165

The Pace of Creative Destruction is Accelerating

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“A gale force warning to leaders: at the current churn rate, about half of S&P 500 companies will be replaced over the next ten years,” is one of the key insights from the 2018 Corporate Longevity Forecast.

The Urgent Need to Strengthen the Nation’s Resilience

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Following World War II and the onset of the Cold War with the Soviet Union, the US undertook a series of measures to strengthen the resilience of the country.

Issues 222

The Real Business of Blockchain

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Building a More Resilient, Data-Driven Economy

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“With each major crisis, be it war, pandemic, or major new technology, there has been a need to reinvent the relationships between individuals, businesses, and government,” wrote MIT professor Alex “Sandy Pentland in the first chapter of Building the New Economy.

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May the Network Force Be With You

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

May the Force Be With You has become part of popular culture since the words were first uttered in the 1977 Star Wars film.

After Years of Promise and Hype, Is AI Once More Failing to Deliver?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Data 178

How to Survive and Thrive in a World of Disruption

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Looking back upon my long career , it’s frankly sobering how many once powerful IT companies are no longer around or are shadows of their former selves, e,g, Digital , Wang , Sun Microsystems , BlackBerry.

How To 243

How Will Covid-19 Transform Urban Life?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

System 203

An Increasingly Digital “New Normal”

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

About a dozen years ago, I attended a conference where I was interviewed on stage by then WSJ technology columnist Walter Mossberg.

Data 210

Blockchain and Public Health Solutions

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The Blockchain Research Institute (BRI) is a global think tank dedicated to the strategic implications of blockchain technologies to business, government and society.

Are We Becoming a Decadent, Stagnating Society?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Earlier this year I read a very interesting essay, “ The Age of Decadence ”, by NY Times columnist Ross Douthat. The essay is adapted from his recently published book The Decadent Society - How We Became the Victims of Our Own Success.

Getting Through Highly Uncertain Times - Some Lessons Learned

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

What does it take to get through highly uncertain times, like the ones we’re in the middle of as we confront the Covid-19 pandemic? Like most of us, I’ve lived through times of high uncertainty in both my personal and professional lives.

Measuring the Effectiveness of Social Distancing Policies

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

One of the most interesting projects in the MIT Connection Science group I ’ m affiliated with is The Atlas of Inequality.

Conceptualizing AI in Human Terms is Misleading and Potentially Harmful

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“We speak of machines that think , learn , and infer.

Data 225

The 2019 Artificial Intelligence Index

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

AI has emerged as the defining technology of our era, as transformative over time as the steam engine, electricity, and the Internet.

Data 212

Honest Conversations - The Key to a Winning Transformational Strategy

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The Long-Term Future of Work and Education: Three Potential Scenarios

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“Experts differ widely in their predictions about how technological innovation will change the labor market, but they all see a need for changes in education,” write British professors Ewart Keep and Phillip Brown in a recently published article, Rethinking the Race Between Education and Technology.

America’s Obsession with Economic Efficiency

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The belief that efficiency is fundamental to competitive advantage has turned management into a science, whose objective is the elimination of waste, - whether of time, materials, or capital, - wrote Roger Martin in “ The High Price of Efficiency ,” a January 2019 article in the Harvard Business Review.

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Why “The Techlash” Is a Threat to Growth and Progress

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A few months ago, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) published A Policymaker’s Guide to the “Techlash” - What It Is and Why It’s a Threat to Growth and Progress. “Does information technology (IT) solve problems and make our lives easier, allowing us to do more with less?,”

Report 189

How Will the Pandemic Reshape Labor Markets?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Issues 169