Reinventing Capitalism in the Age of Big Data
Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Thomas Ramge
Markets have long been acknowledged to be a superior mechanism for managing resources but until the age of big data, they largely functioned better in theory than in practice. Now, as ideal markets are within reach because of vastly easier access to enormous amounts of information, we are on the verge of a major disruption. As data becomes a more valuable asset than cash, the rules for surviving and thriving are changing.
Reinventing Capitalism in the Age of Big Data is a provocative look at how data is reinventing markets and, in so doing, is ushering in an era where the firm is no longer predominant. With access to richer and more comprehensive information about human wants and needs becoming easier and more affordable, an economy powered by data offers the possibility of increased abundance, equality, and resilience.
The book captures the changes that have placed this golden age of the market within reach. Today’s abundance of data enables smoother and more reliable coordination of information than the simplified world of money and price ever could. We’ll still use money to pay and get paid, but the much more important information function that money once fulfilled is now taken on by data.
We are on the verge of a major economic shift. The data-driven markets that will thrive in this environment are not only far better than markets of the past, but also far better than firms at organizing human endeavors. Finance-driven capitalism is being displaced by its more efficient and more democratic disruptor: data capitalism and the effects on sustainability, flexibility, and affluence mark a transformation as significant as the Industrial Revolution.