Platforms, the Sharing Economy and Business Model Innovation

Gregory La Blanc
Lecturer, Berkeley-Haas

The rise of Uber, Airbnb and other “platforms” is part of a larger digital transformation of businesses, converting products into services, changing fixed into variable costs, shortening supply chains and development cycles, allowing for more flexibility and customization of products and pricing. All of this is made possible by lower costs of gathering, storing, retrieving, and analyzing data. Although there is much that is new in this transformation, there are many historical similarities with previous industrial revolutions. They all have at their core innovations in the organization of information that lead to more efficient allocation in the production process. This talk will explore the origins and nature of these innovations.


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