We are in a unique moment in the history of technology evolution, trade, and competition. The pace of change in technology has picked up. It is also becoming clear that the traditional policy frameworks to manage growth and competitiveness are not working. Further complicating the economic trends are the trade disputes and how countries are jostling to position themselves in the evolving Connected Intelligence economy. We are seeing increased anxiety at every level of the food-chain with regulators unable to comprehend the degree of change and how to manage the scores of technologies that are going to shape the next 20-30 years of the global economy.
US has led the technology world for the last several decades with most of the meaningful inventions and startups emerging out of the market. Its free market system has served it well. Over the last decade, China has grown to be both a big trading partner as well as a fearsome competitor. It is a unique moment in history. Policy makers and companies are having a difficult time understanding the complexity of the interconnected economies and technologies and in figuring out the roadmap for the next few months, let alone for the next 50 years.
Corporations are having a hard time competing in the age of monopolies, protectionist regimes, and incessant cyberattacks. A lot of the political systems that were stable for the last 50 years are starting to fall apart and the level of uncertainty is starting to creep up. Amidst all this change and chaos, how should countries think about policy making, embracing technologies, innovation, competition, cooperation? Can we learn from history? What’s the way forward? We are clearly at an unprecedented time in the history of the world, not just the evolution of the tech sector. There is no guidebook, no precedent for dealing with these unusual times.
Whether we like it or not, whether we are prepared for it or not, the worlds of policy making, geo-politics, and technology disruption and competitiveness are inextricably tied together. Each nation needs a new sustainable framework to develop policies and strategies in the global economy. In this paper, we will explore the necessary steps that regulators, policy makers, and the major players need to take to ensure we have a thriving and competitive economy for the coming decades.