Umair Haque writes:
The fundamental economic shift taking place in the 21st century is the shift from cheap information to cheap coordination.
In the second half of the 20th century, thing got digitized, and then networked – the cost of information itself dropped discontinuously. This made the dominant strategy hyperspecialization – to leverage this cheap info by building core competences, which are essentially, scale economies in specialization.
Now, new technologies are making coordination discontinuously cheap – it’s now increasingly possible to do things with that information, without the need to build the huge coordination mechanisms firms employ; like bosses, managers, meetings, roles, and performance assessments.
At it’s heart, this is why Web 2.0 is important – it’s about going beyond cheap information; about dropping the costs of coordination. This is the shift to a post-network economy; where what we do with the stuff on the network is more valuable than just being part of the network.