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As Time Goes ByFrom the Industrial Revolutions to the Information Revolution$
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Chris Freeman and Francisco Louçã

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199251056

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199251053.001.0001

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The Emergence of a New Techno‐Economic Paradigm: The Age of Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

The Emergence of a New Techno‐Economic Paradigm: The Age of Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

Chapter:
(p.301) 9 The Emergence of a New Techno‐Economic Paradigm: The Age of Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
Source:
As Time Goes By
Author(s):

Chris Freeman (Contributor Webpage)

Francisco Louçã (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199251053.003.0009

US technological leadership and domination of the world economy were further enhanced by the extraordinarily rapid rate of technical change and output growth in the semiconductor, computer, and telecommunications industries in which American firms played a leading role and to which American universities made a vital contribution.

Whereas some historians have cast doubts on the pervasiveness and the magnitude of the effects of earlier technological revolutions, such as the railways, few doubt the significance of the Information Technology Revolution and some, such as Castells, see it as ushering in a new type of economy and even a new civilization.

Just as in the 1920s the Hoover Report had stressed that changes in mass production technology and other business developments had given rise to a new style of management, so many economists and management consultants today stress the ways in which the new ICT infrastructure and especially the Internet are bringing in a new type of firm—the ‘network firm’ organizing both production and distribution in entirely new ways.

Great uncertainty still attends more profound social and political changes associated with ICT including the diminished capabilities of national governments to tax and regulate powerful multinational firms and the rise of a new culture of ‘virtual reality’.

Keywords:   computers, ICT, innovation, Internet, multinationals, networks, regulation, semiconductors, technological revolution, telecommunications, US

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