Indicadores engañosos

BELLEVUE, WASHINGTON – “Si no se puede medir, no se puede controlar”. Ese es el pensamiento en el que se sustentan medidas como el Producto Interno Bruto y otros indicadores agregados que informan sobre la salud de economías nacionales de todo el mundo. Los responsables del diseño de políticas y planificadores han usado estas cifras durante décadas para ayudarse a guiar el crecimiento económico interno.

Sin embargo, depender del PIB y de otros indicadores tradicionales puede estar saboteando un objetivo profundamente buscado: el desarrollo de economías innovadoras prósperas. Ahora, algunas partes fundamentales del sector de tecnologías de la información casi no se registran en las cuentas nacionales. Mientras que el PIB mide el valor de mercado de todos los bienes y servicios producidos en un país, muchas empresas exitosas de la era digital (por ejemplo, Wikipedia, Facebook, Twitter, Mozilla, Nestcape, etc.) no producen bienes y los servicios que ofrecen son gratuitos.

Dichas empresas son las mismas que tienden a recortar la productividad de firmas tradicionales. Aplicaciones de navegación gratuitas han contraído las ventas de Garmin, el sistema de navegación pionero, GPS, que alguna vez fue una de las empresas de más rápido crecimiento de los Estados Unidos. Skype está acabando con el sistema de llamadas internacionales por minuto.

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