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Economics, Disrupted

Policymakers, scholars, business leaders, and ordinary citizens are all grappling with the far-reaching implications of digital technology, and economists are no exception. In fact, more than most other academic fields, economics urgently needs to revise its assumptions to make sense of the current era.

CAMBRIDGE – Just within the past few decades, digital technology has transformed the global economy and societies worldwide multiple times. In the 1980s, the automation of manufacturing produced waves of outsourcing and offshoring. In 1989, computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web, and beginning around 2007, a confluence of smartphones, 3G/4G, and new algorithms brought much of the world’s population online, where we have been living ever since.