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Information and Communications Technologies Drive Digital Disruption from Business to Life on Earth

Victor Greu

Romanian Distribution Committee Magazine, 2017, vol. 8, issue 4, 14-23

Abstract: The paper details the analysis of the digital disruption (DD), in the context of the Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) exponential evolution as main driving factor of the progress of the Information society (IS) toward Knowledge Based Society (KBS). The analysis starts with DD/ICT premises in order to identify some of the most important useful rules and advices to face DD consequences/challenges. Among the most relevant premises, IoT, the number of people of Planet versus connected devices expansion and the complex impact of ubiquitous connectivity are included. A DD rules identification incentive is the fact that digitization is closely linked with disruptive innovation and consequently DD could have a significant impact on organization growth. From these basics, the rules follow the aim of maximizing the revenue growth in the dynamic DD/ICT context. This way, the general rule, also largely agreed by the literature, is to use the power of combining the main three directions of investments in digital skills, digital technologies and digital accelerators with the corporate strategy. A deeper approach reveals the useful and extended leveraging role of analysing and adapting organizations to new concepts/rules as interfacing, removing the friction, address non-linearity and transparent thinking. Last but not least, being open to news is crucial in the ever changing digital context. Linking these rules, author opinion is that Descartes’ rule of methodical doubt is again relevant along with the surgical precision of the new ICT. The DD/ICT analysis included, beyond their support for digital economy, their possible leveraging influence exceeding the direct benefits for economy, along with some limits and undesired effects. Most of these unwanted effects could unfortunately come just from ICT exponential pace of expansion at Earth scale, in all areas of activity, as mass products and services. The main causes of such withdraws include climate changes and Earth resources fading, but on the other hand some less visible issues, like the long term effects on humankind behaviour, thinking and evolution. A relevant example is the education area, as the skills and knowledge required of people to perform their jobs could further raise the general level of technical or general education of individuals, useful in life outside the job. On this line the paper revealed the ICT power to penetrate all humankind activity fields, by indirect ways (outside ICT main applications), due to the impact and multiplication power ICT products and services have by their logical, digital and optimized models which are present everywhere everyday ... in every person mind. The indirect consequences lay in the processes of modifying humankind personality and adapting capacity, as a highly skilled person could have less capacity/chances to adapt and do other job or personal activities (from health or other reasons) if his personality is too much modified in the way of thinking. Similar influences could be produced on life beyond human beings, affecting Earth environment including fauna and flora. All DD/ICT applications with mass proliferation (like IoT) could bring, along obvious huge benefits, possible challenges addressing issues like energy/materials consume (Earth resources fading), wastes, recycling, intensive exploit of Earth (soil, water, air) and natural habitat modifications. All these challenges must be linked with the fact that ICT carbon footprint has an important rate of annual increase (exceeding aviation), which is highly linked with ... ICT exponential Planetary development, Big Data, IoT etc. The main conclusion of the paper is that such challenges should not stop the general technological progress, but it is important to watch DD/ICT pace and evolutions in order to minimize these and other similar undesirable effects, by carefully timely evaluating them. In other words, we have to think deeper on present short term, in order to avoid less thinking on future long term.

Keywords: Digital Disruption; Internet of Things; information society; knowledge based society; digital skills; digital technologies; digital accelerators; digital abstraction. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: L63 L86 M15 O31 O33 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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