Monthly Archives: November 2013

The new smart city – from hi-tech sensors to social innovation.

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The new smart city – from hi-tech sensors to social innovation
The business model for smart cities has been around management, energy efficiency and mobility, but is it the right approach?

Tim Smedley, Guardian Professional,
Tuesday 26 November 2013 11.23 EST

If you want to know what’s happening with smart cities, then look no further than Seoul. The capital of one of the world’s most technologically advanced nations was an early investor in smart technology.

At last week’s Smart City World Expo in Barcelona, Jong-Sung Hwang, former CIO of the Seoul metropolitan government, informed of the city’s attempt to capture real-time traffic data. For years the city invested millions of dollars in sensors embedded into the road infrastructure.“But we failed again and again,” said Hwang. “It cost a lot … but the traffic information was not correct so could not be used.” In 2012, however, the city’s 25,000 taxis introduced a touchcard payment system using GPS technology, effectively giving Seoul the real-time traffic information it had long craved at a fraction of the cost. “A smart city can now use smart technology and solve problems without changing the city infrastructure”, said Hwang.

However, for a smart city industry worth $400bn globally, there is much more money to be made in embedding sensors than in analysing existing datasets. And while data given passively or pro-actively by citizens wielding smartphones is by far the most important smart city development of recent years, not everyone at the World Expo seemed ready to admit it.

The word “social”, Ana Cocho Bermejo, COO of Citycise said, made investors run a mile. “Since the 1950s we have been talking about this idea of the city as a complex system … the part that currently has a business model is the part related to this system: management, energy efficiency, mobility – all the smart city industry is fed into that. But the other part, which is social innovation and social engagement, they really don’t know how to make a business model out of it… [citizens] are giving a lot of data, we are telling everybody a lot of things, so can we close the circle and revert it back to the citizens for the improvement of their everyday life.”

There is some evidence of this starting to happen. Hanna Niemi-Hugaerts, project manager, Forum Virium Helsinki, has helped establish an Open311 API in the Finnish capital. An effective coupling of centralised smart technology and citizen participation, this builds on the US idea of a 3-1-1 phoneline to report non-emergency issues, adding a website and smartphone app with the ability to send photos.

“Cities are opening up more and more data, but the development of citizen feedback systems has not been so fast”, explained Niemi-Hugaerts. “Often it disappears to this black hole called ‘info@…’.”. In contrast, an Open311 interface “allows citizens to send photos or update reports on anything from pot holes to traffic signs, the imagination is the limit”, she said. Open311 is also an open dataset, “allowing third party developers or the citizens themselves to develop apps or services”, said Niemi-Hugaerts.

The mood from industry is that is still yearns for Seoul’s intelligent roads, not bottom-up solutions. Rio de Janeiro won best smart city 2013 at the World Expo, its Central Operations Centre the poster child of smart cities – a hub of 400 staff, myriad screens and an 80 square metre master screen, viewing images from the streets, a smart map of live city transport, even predictive analytics and “hot topic sensing” looking at trends and keywords used by residents in social media to try and nip problems in the bud as (or before) they occur.

Rio is the epitome of the centralised, hi-tech approach to shepherding citizens. Yet its chief of staff Pedro Paulo Carvalho told me this was no longer sufficient: “The first stage of a smart city [is] to have the basic [central] infrastructure. Now the real challenge is the second phase, to integrate those systems into daily life, to open up our data … for citizens in a way that they can actually use it. The concept of a ‘smart citizen’ is one that is engaged in the decision-making process.” Despite the city’s awards, it still has some way to go.

There is a middle ground emerging also – the “internet of things”. This is the vision of a smart city formed household by household. Kevin Ashton, founder of MIT’s Auto-ID Center, gave the example of smart water meters. “About 40% of indoor water consumption is waste, it’s leaks, it’s leaving taps on … if we could just capture the information about that and show it back to people who are consuming it they will waste less, it’s really simple”. An under-the-sink meter costing less than $100 and designed by his team will tell householders what’s being used – and leaked – where. Another example saw houseplants tweeting owners when they needed watering. “

The evolution of the smart city will involve all the above. At the end of 2013, no city can truly claim to be a smart city, and it would take a complex set of collaborations to achieve that status. Centralised operations systems must engage with citizens not simply monitor them; citizen groups must question policy and the use of big data, while also contributing to it; smart sensors in streets are still needed, as are those we choose to put into out houses. An holistic approach to smart city planning seems possible, but we are not there yet. And in the defence of the major technology firms, the political infrastructure is not there yet either.

“The main challenges are not technological,” said Alex Mestre, marketing director of Spain’s Abertis Telecom, “we can do that pretty well. The big challenge I believe is in the political domain … what we need is a clear indication from the municipality what has to be done, the silo barriers in the different departments have to be broke … and a political mandate [in place] before we can roll out anything. Otherwise it will be [only] nice experiments.”
In other words, the technology is already out there – but are we smart enough to use it?

Ingenious Zipper Lets You Zip With One Hand

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Ingenious Zipper Lets You Zip With One Hand

While creating an easier zipper for his sick uncle, one designer fixed the problem all of us have when zipping up.

 

By Mark Wilson for co.DESIGN

October 16, 2013

I’m a grown man, and zippers can still be tough. Lining up the slider perfectly with the very bottom of a zipper is the simplest thing in the world. . .until something goes wrong. Maybe I pull carelessly and the teeth get off by a rung. Maybe my fingers are frozen and the task becomes akin to threading a needle. Maybe I yank too hard and the whole thing just breaks.

Apparel maker Under Armour has a solution. Starting this November, its clothing will include the Magzip, an ingenious zipper that magnetically clasps automatically and still provides just enough leverage for you to zip up one-handed if you need to. Trying out a sample the company sent me, I’m amazed each and every time it works. The Magzip a testament to mechanical ingenuity in the electronic age.

But the product wasn’t originally conceived for convenience. As engineer Scott Peters watched his uncle develop myotonic dystrophy, a condition notorious for attacking the strength and coordination of one’s appendages, he saw first-hand how manipulating buttons can impossible task, and even aligning the box and pin of a zipper can become daunting.

“My mom [an occupational therapist] and I got talking how to help him, and i jumped right in–’I think i could come up with a better zipper than what the rest of the world has used for 100 years,’” Peters tells Co.Design. “So we put a few magnets on a zipper, and of course that didn’t work so well.”

But Peters believed in the idea, playing with magnets on zippers for months before he caught a break. Sitting around a campfire one evening, his idea attracted the attention of a neighbor who happened to be an accomplished mechanical engineer and designer in his own rite. Together, they took on the problem in the only way it could be–constant iteration. The eureka moment of a magnetic zipper was crucial. But the exact millimeter grooves making the process practical would require painstaking nuance.

“Magnets in and of themselves won’t work. They’ll drive components together, but you have issues of alignment, issues of holding things together without popping out–and pulling them apart can be a nightmare,” Peters explains. “We had to figure out the combination of mechanical design so it self-aligns and easily locks itself in place, enabling you to zip with one hand.”

“We started rapid prototyping, getting parts machined, and testing. We’d make a part, assemble it, and glue it on a zipper to find out what worked and didn’t work. I had one part that actually broke, and when this had broken, it kind of showed me the way. . .we were able to evolve the design to where it is today, a more open hook-and-catch.”

About 25 prototypes later, the magnetic hook-and-catch was an exciting proof of concept, and it became the system they patented. With legal protection in-hand, the team began approaching apparel companies with the idea. They received good feedback, but no one wanted to buy in–even though the zipper we all know today is a fairly flawed piece of hardware.

“One of the things we’ve found is that certain industries get a standard product in certain areas, and that’s the way it is,” Peters explains. “So when they innovate in a space, they innovate in a space that everyone else is innovating in. It’s rare you get people circling back to question the status quo.”

But in a twist of luck, Under Armour had been actively searching for innovative new ideas, and they came across the magnetic zipper patents online. The company reached out to the inventors and helped with the next wave of product iteration. The final device they created is a far cry from the original zipper-with-a-magnet-taped-on. It’s an appealing set of cylinders that protects magnets of just the right strength within. They meet, self-latch, and provide the leverage to zip up one-handed. And the unzip? It just as easy.

The Magzip will debut in Under Armour’s line this November.

Mark Wilson is a writer who started Philanthroper.com, a simple way to give back every day.

Service robots are making rapid progress.

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Robots are on the march. Most of them work on assembly lines, building cars, making electronic devices and processing food, drugs and chemicals. These giant machines often operate in cages because of the danger they pose to anyone who gets in their way. But robots are spreading beyond the factory, a trend that will accelerate in 2014.

The situation is akin to the transition from mainframe computers to PCs. Mainframes are big, expensive and centralised systems, like industrial robots today. They are complicated to set up and not easily adapted to new tasks. But now sales of other sorts of robots are taking off. These “service” robots are more like PCs: not as powerful as industrial robots, but more flexible, decentralised systems that make individuals more productive.

In 2011 industrial robots accounted for 86% of the $30 billion robot market, and service robots just 14%, according to the International Federation of Robotics, an industry body. But growth in industrial robots has slowed to 5% a year, whereas sales of service robots are expected to grow by 25-30% for the next few years. These carry out lighter tasks such as picking and packing, cleaning and assisting in surgery.

Service robots are making rapid progress because they are, in effect, an offshoot of the computer industry rather than a form of industrial machinery. They can take advantage of cheap smartphones or tablet computers (often used as controllers) and the emergence of open-source platforms that allow researchers to customise robots for a particular task. Venture-capital firms are piling in to back start-ups developing robots. As the saying goes in Silicon Valley, hardware is the new software.

The poster child for this new breed of robot is Baxter (see photograph), made by Rethink Robotics, a Boston start-up. Baxter has two red arms and a cartoonish, strikingly photogenic touchscreen “face” which is used to program it. Clever software means Baxter is easier for novices to configure and has more common sense than the average robot: if a conveyor belt bringing it objects to pack into boxes slows down, for example, it does too. Baxter costs $22,000, a fraction of the cost of a typical industrial robot. Universal Robots, a Danish firm, is another exponent of this new breed. It makes robot arms costing $27,000 that can be quickly taught to perform routine tasks in science labs and workshops.

The way will be cleared in 2014 for civilian use of flying robots

Other service robots are designed for specific jobs, rather than being jacks-of-all-trades. Millions of Roomba robotic vacuum cleaners have been sold by iRobot, based in Massachusetts. The TUG robot made by Aethon delivers medicines and food in hospitals. “Telepresence” robots allow someone to stroll virtually through a distant office by remotely controlling a wheeled robot equipped with a camera, microphone, loudspeaker and screen displaying live video of its pilot’s face. Some telepresence robots, such as one made by Double Robotics of California, are motorised cradles for an iPad—a vivid illustration of how robotics has benefited from advances in mobile computing.

Sit back and relax

Researchers in many countries are developing humanoid robots to act as care assistants for old people. That is still a distant goal. But two other forms of robot are making rapid progress. The first is the unmanned aerial vehicle or drone, which is essentially a flying robot. Military drones of various sizes have become a defining feature of modern warfare. American regulators should clear the way during 2014 for the civilian use of flying robots in fields such as agriculture, law enforcement and monitoring oil-and-gas installations. New rules are needed, and not just in America (a drone made an unexpected appearance at one of Angela Merkel’s campaign stops in 2013), if flying robots are to fulfil their potential and show that they can do more than just deliver death from the skies.

The second sort of robot to look out for is the robot on wheels, better known as the self-driving car. Some 2014 models will be able to drive themselves in stop-go traffic, steering and maintaining a constant distance from the car in front. Google has built cars capable of handling almost all aspects of driving, though the transition to completely autonomous wheeled robots will be gradual.

The proliferation of robots is easily overlooked because many of them do not conform to the stereotypes of what a robot should look like. But they are already among us, and their numbers will grow in 2014.

 

Tom Standage: digital editor, The Economist, and author of “Writing on the Wall: Social Media—The First 2,000 Years” (Bloomsbury)

Disruption Through Business Model Innovation: The Story of Minnicks

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  Huffington Post 11/04/2013 by Rajesh Setty

2013-10-26-minnicksphoto.jpg

Disruption of the positive kind is generally talked about when there are mega success stories that disrupt the status quo and change the world view of the people. A good example is the car rental industry that remained the same for decades until ZipCar came and disrupted the market. The game was not over with Uber, GetAround, Lyft, SideCar and such companies changing the game again.

Of course, you don’t need to have a business that has a national scope to engage in business model innovation. It is not based on the size and scope of the business. It starts with your mindset. If you have to change the world view of people around you on a topic, remember that you need to first change YOUR world view on that topic. It all begins with you.

Here is the story of reinvention of an HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, Air-conditioning) contracting company called Minnicks based in Laurel in Maryland. Minnicks is a family-owned business started in the year 1954. Rob Minnick is a third-generation entrepreneur who took over the reins of the company. Rob is a risk taker and an innovator so was uncomfortable with the status quo. Change was imminent.

But, the million-dollar question was – “Change to what?”

The first step was to take a serious look at the business models in vogue. The most popular model continues to be annual maintenance agreements – parts, parts only, parts and labor to start with. So many pricing structures and models but the big metric everyone was judging their business success is the total number of agreements they had in their bags.

Sometimes there would be confusion in the minds of customers who thought that they had pre-paid not just for the inspections but also for the repairs that were suggested based on inspection findings. These customers who misunderstood the program were totally unhappy when they were told that the maintenance agreement only covered inspections and they had to PAY for repairs.

Reflecting on what everyone was going after (highest number of annual maintenance contracts) it didn’t take long for Rob to realize that it was a game where the more successful you are, the more trouble you might get into.

Why?

Because it takes at least 1-2 hours to do a thorough inspection of the systems. Simple math will show that you can take up about 4 inspections per day or 20 inspections per week or about 1000 inspections per year. Add to that the cost of acquiring customers, support and administration costs and he could see a model that was stretched at the seams. Rob and his company were deeply vested in the same game.

Rob engaged a consultant who after some analysis proposed something radical. The consultant suggested dropping this concept of annual maintenance agreements.

“I like it already, but what do you have in mind?” Rob asked.

He loved that the proposal was radical. Together Rob and the consultant came up with a model that was completely upside down (for others, of course). Minnicks introduced a program called VIP Program. It was a game changer.

The Minnicks VIP Program had no costs to join and all members would be instantly eligible for 10 percent discount on all the services. Rob was fascinated by the Starbucks Rewards program and wanted to model Minnicks Rewards program based on it.

Minnicks was not interested in being in the software development business so he researched for any programs that could fit the bill. There was none that were available out of the box. A few weeks later, he found a company called CaptureCode that was in the personal engagement and loyalty solution business for the hospitality industry. Tony Padam who led that was in the personal engagement and loyalty solution business for the hospitality industry. Tony Padam who led CaptureCode was a risk taker just like Rob Minnick – so they both hit it off well. Long story short, CaptureCode technology was easily customized to suit the needs of Minnicks Rewards Program.

Today, all the equipment in a VIP member’s location is tagged with an unique QR code. The technician who visits the location will service the equipment and with a simple scan of the associated QR code, the VIP member is credited with rewards points. Each reward point is worth $1. In addition, Minnicks offers reward points for referrals, social media engagement (eg: Liking Facebook Page and following on Twitter will earn points). Customers can redeem the reward points to pay a discounted price for services that they avail from Minnicks.

Is the program working?

Yes and in a big way. VIP members are asking how else they can help Minnicks to earn more reward points is a good sign for Minnicks. Plus, there was a side benefit – there was ZERO confusion in the minds of customers about what was covered as there was no prepayment required to join the VIP Member program.

Minnicks really won twice by changing the game. First, by earning more referrals reducing their own customer acquisition costs and second, by increasing customer satisfaction by avoiding confusion about what was covered in the services.

 

 

 

IdeaPaint

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This innovation has been around since 2008 but it still is a great recent innovation. From IdeaPaint’s website:

Man
IdeaPaint™ Inc. was founded in 2008 to help people and businesses collaborate more effectively, be more creative, and accelerate innovation. Our signature product, a patent-pending dry erase paint, transforms virtually any smooth surface into an erasable canvas, giving you the space you need to fully explore your big ideas. It’s more than a tool, it’s a catalyst for better results.IdeaPaint is widely recognized as the originator of high-performance dry erase paint, and has been celebrated by the likes of The Wall Street Journal, Mashable, Fast Company and CNBC as a tool that has a profound impact on the process, experience and outcome of bringing ideas to life. It’s advanced chemistry, but profoundly low-tech. An innovative real-world solution, IdeaPaint has brought the human element back to more than 75,000 offices, schools and homes around the world by simply getting people on their feet, working together and exploring their creativity wherever ideas happen.IdeaPaint is available in a variety of formulas that cater to commercial, educational and residential customers, and is the gold standard for durability and performance.

Bike Helmet: The Hövding, A $600 Air Bag For Your Head

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Invisible Bike HelmetInvisible Bike Helmet

Invisible Bike Helmet

Co.Design October 4, 2012

Kyle VanHemert

If we have any chance at weaning ourselves off of the dead dinosaur juice that fuels our planet, sustainable transportation, like bicycles, are going to have to be part of the solution. In fact, cities like Copenhagen have already   toward a model in which bikes, not cars, rule the road; on the bike highways there, 68% of adults ride their bikes at least once a week and 55% of children cycle to school on a regular basis. The latter statistic is particularly heartening. But as bikes become an increasingly integral part of our green future, bike safety must be considered as well. A biking revolution invites us to think about a correlated upheaval: a revolutionary bike helmet.
 
That’s one way to think of the Hövding, which isn’t a helmet so much as a wearable airbag for your melon. We featured the Hövding in 2010 when it was in the concept stage, but unlike many of the too-wacky-for-the-real-world industrial design concepts you see on the Internet, this one is now something you can actually buy.

To recap: Hövding was conceived in 2005 as a masters thesis project by two students at the Faculty of Engineering at Lund University in Sweden. Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin, two women who say they “wouldn’t be seen dead in a polystyrene helmet,” surveyed their friends for qualities they desired in a futuristic bike helmet, and when one acquaintance said he yearned for “invisible” protection, the lightbulb went off and the Hövding was born. The idea was that an air bag could be built into a collar to be worn inconspicuously around a cyclist’s neck, like a scarf. It would be fitted with sensors that could detect when an accident was taking place and inflate the collar in time to prevent damage to the head and spine.

Haupt and Alstin’s concept garnered a good deal attention, and in 2006 it won the Venture Cup startup competition–along with a cash prize to help facilitate its production as a real product. Then came the hard stuff: figuring out how to make sure it could save lives. Ulf Björnstig, a professor and surgeon at Sweden’s Umeå University Hospital and an expert in cycling-related injuries, was enlisted to head the effort. His team compiled an encyclopedic database of the types of accidents cyclists face and then re-enacted those collisions with dummies and stunt riders from the Swedish Stunt Group. Alva Sweden, an airbag manufacturer, was charged with the development of the inflatable device itself.
 
The finished product uses a series of accelerometers and gyrometers to distinguish between “normalmovements” and “abnormal movements”–basically whether the wearer is getting sideswiped by a car or is just bending over to roll up their pant leg. In the event of an accident, a small inflator positioned on the back of the rider’s neck pumps helium into a nylon hood, built to withstand contact with the asphalt or other surfaces. After detecting abnormal movement, it takes the Hövding just a tenth of a second to inflate.

Now, after seven years of development, the Hövding 1.0 is available to protect your own noggin. The Technical Research Institute of Sweden ran all the requisite safety tests on the inflatable helmet, and in October of last year it was officially awarded its CE certification, marking its compliance with a number of safety and performance standards required for all helmets sold in the European Union. Earlier this year, a limited run of the helmet was subject to a recall after a flaw was found with the collar’s zipper, but the team addressed the issue, and this summer an independent safety test found the helmet to be among the safest available, in terms of the g-forces a rider experiences during a collision (Co. Design waited to run this news on the helmet’s wide release until we confirmed the zipper issue had been solved).

The Hövding comes in two sizes, Small and Medium, and sells for 3998 SEK–around $600. Extra shells can be purchased for $75 and swapped in to give the collar a different look. The whole setup runs off an on-board battery, and charging is taken care of via a micro USB port. The Hövding team says the collar works fine with ponytails, bobs, baseball caps, headphones, and a good deal of other cuts and accessories. Heavy dreadlocks, however, have been deemed incompatible. One salient detail: The airbag cannot be re-infl.ated in the event of an accident–each Hövding is only good for one collision.

Is a $600 one-time-use inflatable bicycle helmet for everyone? Definitely not. But bikes are good, and bike safety is good, and while I don’t mind my $12 Supercut getting mussed a bit by a regular old hard-shell helmet, if this saves one well-coiffed Scandinavian cyclist’s life, then it’s a good idea. As Haupt and Alstin say, “a helmet that just sits on the shelf is no good to anyone.”
Find out more about the Hövding on the company’s page. http://www.hovding.com/en/

 

Disruptive technologies: Advances that will transform life, business, and the global economy

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Report| McKinsey Global Institute

Disruptive technologies: Advances that will transform life, business, and the global economy

May 2013 | byJames Manyika, Michael Chui, Jacques Bughin, Richard Dobbs, Peter Bisson, and Alex Marrs

The relentless parade of new technologies is unfolding on many fronts. Almost every advance is billed as a breakthrough, and the list of “next big things” grows ever longer. Not every emerging technology will alter the business or social landscape—but some truly do have the potential to disrupt the status quo, alter the way people live and work, and rearrange value pools. It is therefore critical that business and policy leaders understand which technologies will matter to them and prepare accordingly.

MGI’s Michael Chui discusses the most economically disruptive technologies that will transform business and life in next decade.

Disruptive technologies: Advances that will transform life, business, and the global economy, a report from the McKinsey Global Institute, cuts through the noise and identifies 12 technologies that could drive truly massive economic transformations and disruptions in the coming years. The report also looks at exactly how these technologies could change our world, as well as their benefits and challenges, and offers guidelines to help leaders from businesses and other institutions respond.

We estimate that, together, applications of the 12 technologies discussed in the report could have a potential economic impact between $14 trillion and $33 trillion a year in 2025. This estimate is neither predictive nor comprehensive. It is based on an in-depth analysis of key potential applications and the value they could create in a number of ways, including the consumer surplus that arises from better products, lower prices, a cleaner environment, and better health.

Some technologies detailed in the report have been gestating for years and thus will be familiar. Others are more surprising. Examples of the 12 disruptive technologies include:

Advanced robotics—that is, increasingly capable robots or robotic tools, with enhanced “senses,” dexterity, and intelligence—can take on tasks once thought too delicate or uneconomical to automate. These technologies can also generate significant societal benefits, including robotic surgical systems that make procedures less invasive, as well as robotic prosthetics and “exoskeletons” that restore functions of amputees and the elderly.

Next-generation genomics marries the science used for imaging nucleotide base pairs (the units that make up DNA) with rapidly advancing computational and analytic capabilities. As our understanding of the genomic makeup of humans increases, so does the ability to manipulate genes and improve health diagnostics and treatments. Next-generation genomics will offer similar advances in our understanding of plants and animals, potentially creating opportunities to improve the performance of agriculture and to create high-value substances—for instance, ethanol and biodiesel—from ordinary organisms, such as E. coli bacteria.

Energy-storage devices or physical systems store energy for later use. These technologies, such as lithium-ion batteries and fuel cells, already power electric and hybrid vehicles, along with billions of portable consumer electronics. Over the coming decade, advancing energy-storage technology could make electric vehicles cost competitive, bring electricity to remote areas of developing countries, and improve the efficiency of the utility grid.

The potential benefits of the technologies discussed in the report are tremendous—but so are the challenges of preparing for their impact. If business and government leaders wait until these technologies are exerting their full influence on the economy, it will be too late to capture the benefits or react to the consequences. While the appropriate responses will vary by stakeholder and technology, we find that certain guiding principles can help businesses and governments as they plan for the effects of disruptive technologies.

  • Business leaders should keep their organizational strategies updated in the face of continually evolving technologies, ensure that their organizations continue to look ahead, and use technologies to improve internal performance. Disruptive technologies can change the game for businesses, creating entirely new products and services, as well as shifting pools of value between producers or from producers to consumers. Organizations will often need to use business-model innovations to capture some of that value. Leaders need to plan for a range of scenarios, abandoning assumptions about where competition and risk could come from, and not be afraid to look beyond long-established models. Organizations will also need to keep their employees’ skills up-to-date and balance the potential benefits of emerging technologies with the risks they sometimes pose.
  • Policy makers can use advanced technology to address their own operational challenges (for example, by deploying the Internet of Things to improve infrastructure management). The nature of work will continue to change, and that will require strong education and retraining programs. To address challenges that the new technologies themselves will bring, policy makers can use some of those very technologies—for example, by creating new educational and training systems with the mobile Internet, which can also help address an ever-increasing productivity imperative to deliver public services more efficiently and effectively. To develop a more nuanced and useful view of technology’s impact, governments may also want to consider new metrics that capture more than GDP effects. This approach can help policy makers balance the need to encourage growth with their responsibility to look out for the public welfare as new technologies reshape economies and lives.

About the authors

James Manyika and Richard Dobbs are directors of the McKinsey Global Institute, where Michael Chui is a principal; Jacques Bughin is a director in McKinsey’s Brussels office; Peter Bisson is a director in the Stamford office.