I have a group project.
Anthony D. Williams, my co-author of Wikinomics, and I are writing a new book about rebuilding the world for an age of networked intelligence. We need to redesign all of our institutions for the global, knowledge economy.
The global economic crisis is a wakeup call to the world. Centerpieces of the industrial economy are at the end of their life cycle. American newspapers are beginning to tumble. Much of the auto industry, once the epitome of the North American industrial economy, is insolvent. Similar upheaval afflicts other sectors — from the universities and science, to entertainment and media, to government and democracy. The financial services industry doesn’t need just a fresh infusion of capital or some new regulations; it needs a whole new operating model.
In the midst of this turmoil one challenge rises above all others: Creating a green energy grid and a reindustrialization of the planet for sustainability.
We need to rethink and rebuild many of the organizations and institutions that have served us well for decades — in some cases centuries — but are no longer up to the task.
Thanks to the new web, for the first time in human history the peoples of the world can build a global movement — where everyone is on the same side.
Which is why Anthony and I believe these challenges, particularly global warming, can be overcome. While the burning platform of the global economy is propelling change, there are also new opportunities, driven by Web 2.0, offering a global platform for collaboration and an unprecedented level of connectivity. We are transitioning to a new age, where wealth creation, social development and a sustainable future flows from knowledge – an asset more widely and freely available than ever before. The distribution of real power, and with it formal power, is changing.
The current financial crisis and recession will be remembered as a watershed, dividing the old from the new. Many of the ideas and concepts of the knowledge age were ideas in waiting; waiting for a new medium of communications to network human intelligence on a global basis; waiting for a new generation of digital natives for whom a new paradigm was like the air; and waiting for a global economic convulsion to shock the world from its determination to cling to the old.
This is what the book is about, and our tentative title is Rebuilding the World. But we think the wisdom of the crowd could co better, both in the content and in the title. What advice do you have? Soon we’ll unveil a contest with prizes.
There's definitely a “re-configuration” going on, starting with Twitter which is reconfiguring the Web as we know it.
Although the word “rebuilding” is strong and depicts the change imperatives, I would suggest something close to “re-configuration” if there was a better word for that.
I addition to soliciting ideas on the book's title, how else will you be reflecting the need to “redesign all of our institutions for the global, knowledge economy” during the course of developing and distributing the book?
The coming “transformation” involves significant “change” and as Darwin once said … “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” This is true of all organisms and organizations. The biggest difference now is the speed of change and the speed of information flow. The kick-starting has begun and if not for the madness that fueled the dot.com meltdown, we might have moved along the path of network intelligence sooner. The laggards will perish (and are). So, what would be more apropos as a byline than the shock of “On becoming extinct or thriving in the [rebuilt world]?” Just [substitute] the ultimate title.
looking forward to participate in the contest!, in the meanwhile keep an eye on this challenge at Innocentive
could give some insight about the right title for such an interesting book.
I am a believer in your first two books but I am concerned that you operate from a false premise when it comes to global warming. Perhaps one part of your new book should focus on the massive fraud of global warming that has been perpetuated on a global scale. You do your best work when you have an uncompromised view of raw data; I hope you can take off your green global glasses before you distill too many errant lessons from your bogus hypothesis.
Proposed book title: “The new era of intellectual capitalism”.
Best of luck Don and Anthony!
How about —
– – Time fo a “Do Over”
Best luck for your efforts, Don. It looks the biggest problem will be how to select the coming information, how to prevent those, who fill the web with nonsence and how to select really usable friends in Facebook, Twitter, Google's new system …
Possibly more important than the climate is how to prevent that the richest bankers are not able again to start this kind of global finance crisis. This one was started with 2,000 B$ subprime bomb with, having 500 B$ nothing.
Why not putting the name: Age of networked intelligence?
I think it's going to be hard to beat “Wikinomics”, myself, but I will give it some thought and send some ideas in for the contest. I agree you can do better than Rebuilding the World!
I think your description covers too many issues to be handled in your usual style – fully backed by data. so firstly, I would narrow down the issues to be discussed before putting a name to the whole package.
Secondly, I don't believe that the current/recent crisis is/was caused by lack of a new paradigm. Most of the cause was pure incompetence at many levels. before bringing in a new bold era, let's get competent the old fashioned way first – you don't put out a fire by putting gasoline on it.
Mybe the title should be “How to become competent in an incompetent world”.
By the way, I am a partner in and evironmental company. The president, Dr. Boris Weisman, has over 30 years in the field. He is a veritable encyclopedia of knowledge on the subject if you really want to go there.
My recommendation is “Beyond Telepathy: Rebuilding the World for the Age of Networked Intelligence.”
I have long believed that “media is an extension of the senses” as McLuan first postulated. We have used greater technology, speed, and ubiquity to mimic our nervous systems. Now we are at the point of making a final leap by believing “en mass” that telepathy is achievable for many people….. all the best…. ron cooper http://www.AccessSacramento.org
A possible title “Connect or Contract” a path for sustainability in a disruptive future
I also have a model of how the new corporation might be configured.
Hi Don, we met years ago when I was at HEC Montreal. I now live in Beijing China, “the center of the universe” and am excited by the theme of your new book. As commentor Josephpilarsky suggests – we need to return to individual competence and care. My work in China is the promotion of the “Peace Plus One” Sustainability Symbol – an effort to encourage people to “Think Three Ways” in everything they do. http://www.SustainabilitySymbol.com . Our seriously deteriorating world (note to commentor who suggests GW is a hoax – fine… come and live here in China for awhile!! – that will give you the “felt” data you need) is in need of not only re-structuring of the Hardware and Software, but in my area of interest: Mindware.
My background in teaching MBA's and working at the Chinese Academy of Sciences Research Center for Eco Environmental Sciences has caused me to shift my focus from CSR to what I call “ISR” – Individual Social Responsibility – and that's why the simple yet effective 3 Finger Sustainability Meme has such great potential to PREPARE the world's population for the skills they will individually need to survive, and THRIVE_!/ I'm thinking about a title for your book – but all I can come up with relates to our common objectives, rebuilding the world's Peace, Balance and Harmony by considering the balance of Society, the Environment and Economy in our daily decisions_!/ Keep up your inspiring work!
Hi Don, Anthony,
I agree with others that 'Wikinomics' will be hard to beat, but I do agree that it is critical to beat the drum for the need for individuals, institutions and organisations to change the way they interact in this connected world. 'Rebuilding the World' sounds a bit pretensious, not to say ambitious! How about something simple like 'World 2.0 – Reconnecting with reality'. I look forward to contributing to this exciting project!
How about: Reboot
“Plugged in for Life”
The social and business networks are very much intertwined and integrated 7*24. The younger generations first intuitive task of every day is the text…. Imagine before our traditional good mornings… they sleep with their cell phones and wake up to see who has sent them there first message and doesn't stop until they go to bet.
How about “Time to change? But change what?”. because it seems nobody knows where the problem resides in this system. monocausalities are getting all the attention. it's the bonuses of the banks that are the cause. its the co2 thats the cause. its the weapons which are the cause.
In no way I would vote for “Rebuilding the World”.
To rebuild/fix/reboot/restart/cleanup/rescue/and so on the world does sound pretty much like some inflationary meaningless bozo mantra. I also think, that to “rebuild something” you will beforehand need “something that could be rebuilt”. but what if exactly the structure of “before” is illdesigned? What we are seeing now is a creditcrunch, nothing else.
Yeah the world has changed, as long as you define world by points of this globe which have WiFi and which depend on money as we know it as infrastructure. The really scary thing about this is, that you analyzed it exactly right:
“Centerpieces of the industrial economy are at the end of their life cycle.”
That's completely right! The centerpiece we talk about is “Money” as an infrastructure which is illdesigned for a healthy world. the debtamount worldwide is rising as fast as never before because this is this scary “exponential thingy” our mathteacher mentioned when we were dealing with power-law-principles. you should think about that before writing a book about “rebuilding” something having comparable size like “a world”.
Thanks for the great comments everyone. Clearly this will go on for a while. I like the idea “reboot” but if my systems analyst days serve me well, a reboot is a restart of the same software. But in this case we need a new generation of software… 2.0 if you will (but that one is so overdone..)
Here's a more elaborate description of the book:
The collapse of the financial systems and the global economic crisis of 2009 were a wakeup call to the world. We need to rethink and rebuild many of the organizations and institutions that have served us well for decades, even centuries, but are no longer able. The pillars of economic and social life that grew from the industrial economy have come to the end of their life cycle.
The financial services industry, example fresh infusion of capital or some new regulations; it needs a whole new operating model — one based on integrity, transparency, sharing intellectual property, global governance and other design principles of the knowledge age.
The epitome of the industrial economy, the American auto industry has collapsed. As companies in other sectors cut their costs to stay alive, many began to see that hunkering down, while necessary was insufficient for success. From manufacturing to retail smart managers have begun to initiate long over due changes to their structures and strategies.
The upheaval is now spreading to other sectors — from the universities and science, to entertainment and media, to government and democracy. The recent collapse of many newspapers is a storm warning of more to come. There is a growing appreciation that conventional wisdom isn’t going to cut it for success in this century. We need to reinvent our institutions.
There is no more important challenge than creating a green energy grid and a reindustrialization of the planet for sustainability. And thanks to the new web, for the first time in human history the peoples of the world are building a global movement — where everyone is on the same side.
So while the burning platform of the global economy is propelling change there are simultaneously new opportunities, being driven by a new global platform for collaboration and an unprecedented level of connectivity in society that can be marshaled to solve problems on a time-scale that matters.
As we finally transition to a new age, wealth creation, social development and a sustainable future, now flows from knowledge – an asset more widely and freely available than ever before. The distribution of real power, and with it formal power, is changing.
The financial crisis and recession of 2009–10 will be remembered as a watershed dividing the old from the new. Many of the ideas and concepts of the knowledge age were ideas in waiting; waiting for a new medium of communications to network human intelligence on a global basis; waiting for a new generation of digital natives for whom a new paradigm was like the air; and waiting for a global economic convulsion to shock the world from its determination to cling to the old.
The question is now posed: How must our institutions change for a new century, new media, new generation and a new economy? The next decade is crucial. What is to be done?
Do It, Network & Accelerate the World!
Networked Intelligence rewires Planet Earth
Rewiring the World
One of the missing components in the green economy is a simple, accurate metrics to measure 'carbon footprint' and the technolgy to monitor the ability to change those metrics
@Donald Ziraldo: Perhaps something like his is already under cinstruction… you may have a look at opentrace.org. They want to build the Wikipedia of carbon footprint.
I have been an exponent of CSR for a very long time and have always found that to engage you MUST have the decision making individuals already attuned to an ethical viewpoint, otherwise you are working in another PR arena. The difference is the sustainability of the intervention. Your ISR view fits very closely with the terminology that we use at the moment , Volunteer. However from your discourse I determine that you mean more that a directed body by an organisation; is your interpretation more towards a connected group through the internet – an individual but joined by a common thread ? My reasoning stems from the growth of individual citizen reporters and spokesperson that are able to give their INDIVIDUAL view, rather than presenting content which appears to represent the majority view but is in fact unvalidated. A problem that many national (government backed) TV stations face. I have written this without refering to your links (at work-in a rush!) but I would like to explore further.
About The New Frontier: The power of the emerging Human Grid.
Here is the text from JFK speech, “We stand at the edge of a New Frontier—the frontier of unfulfilled hopes and dreams, a frontier of unknown opportunities and beliefs in peril. Beyond that frontier are uncharted areas of science and space, unsolved problems of peace and war, unconquered problems of ignorance and prejudice, unanswered questions of poverty and surplus.”
Hi Don. Look Forward to all of the great ideas you present. I think that all of the topics you wish to tackle from sustainability to government to the entertainment industrtry to our global economy center on one theme – CHANGE! or Evolution! The term change is almost cliche after Obama really almost played it out. I like the one you have but a couple variations:
“Connected Evolution”: How the Net Gen Will Force the World to Change or Face Extinction
“Re-Wire the World”
“The World's Net Deal” – spin off of the FDR's “New Deal” (doesnt have as much ring though..)
In reading your more detailed description of the book, I still feel that the scope you propose is too wide-ranging to discuss and propose solutions in a single volume.
I also feel that you are to optimistic/idealistic about the ability of people accross the globe to dialogue meaningfully about the issues at hand. I believe that the global info pool is being polluted with poor information and misinformation. This would be akin to trying to rebuild the Tower of Babel, with not only a language and cultural barriers, but also relying on poor information.
In the book I sent you a few years ago – Truth and the Practical God – I discuss this very issue. You might wish to revisit the ideas in that book as they are very pertinent to what you are trying to do. Before we can fix the world, we need to fix ourselves by insisting on higher standards of truth and integrity from all of us.
Perhaps the book should be called The Leaning Tower of Babel.
“3.0 or Bust” 2.0 is no longer the future – we are 2.0, the future, is now. Where we go from now, how we integrate the past and the present to shape the next century is the question. In other words, we have all this fantastic technology, but how do we translate it into a meaningful (and sustainable) foundation to replace the industrial foundation that we now find crumbling and no longer able to adequately carry us forward.
How about “World Wisdom Revealed” or “The Wisdom of the World” –has that www feel to it.
How about “Connect the world – rework the planet”. One really important point: I sincerely wish that you will be careful in working too much climate change-stuff into the book. I am very concerned that the whole climate change thing is a terrible mistake. The science behind it is truly awful. I would hate to see Don Tapscott as a part of the save-the-world crowd. Sorry for not being politically correct!
Please let me know when you need help with the cover. Best to you Don! I enjoy your work as it is our work. – Yvonne Hickey
The world has moved on but still many business organizations and government organizations are still stuck with the old paradigm and bureaucratic approaches. Old approach in the new world could be presented as successfull, but they are a real vacuum and waiting to fail. The vacuums will be brought down by their very own people and customers (Look at our auto industry). Our government needs be overhauled (look at e-health). Our education system need to be rehauled for today's needs and tomorrow's needs. Our kids (Canada & U.S.) has to be taught to work hard. It is so sad to see many teenagers dreaming to make money without hard work. Education system needs to focus on how to learn. Our financial system that makes me think that keeping money in pillow might give me better returns. Looking at all of these the trust on delivering results by many of the organizations and institutions are a big question mark (?). The concept of globalization should integrated in organizations and institutions thinking process and their policies.
So looking at all of these, I think it would make sense for the book title to be
Title: “Rebuilding the Trust” or “Rebuild Trust”
Mantra: Rethink, Renovate, Rebuild, Reinvent for today and tomorrow.
I couldn't agree more. Policy change in the future needs to happen from the bottom up. Politics is so broken and riddled with insider information cascading, special interests and plain old bureaucracy that by the people, for the people seems to have been forgotten. Country should recognize that the internet can change that.
Disagree with your knowcking the save the planet but I thin the best way to end that argument and work together is to talk about the money and jobs it can create. Not to mention, lowering our dependence on foreign oil…which is typically in the hands of anti american extremists. I don't understand why this argument doesn't resonate with more people. It gets Cheney, Gore, Exxon and the flower children out of the way. Let them argue somewhere else
Hi Mark – with this I agree. It's very important to reduce dependence on foreign oil, as are jobs & the economy. But please also remember that not all climate sceptics are siding with Exxon and Cheney. To me Dick Cheney is a fascist. I don't know about Exxon, but I do know that the industrial growth of the 20th Century – and particularly that of the USA – was based on oil. So don't knock oil too much! Without it this would be a totally different America.
“REWORLD” could be a good option…or not.. ;-)
REWORLD exists already.. I´m sorry.
Another one: “¿Are we sure we want to save the changes?”
Life is calling us. We need a new concept also for what we consider “change”. I think I´m free because I´m staring a shop window and nobody has told me to do that!..this is so limited..I am sure that I dont want to save this changes..I want other changes to be considered. Another concept of change. I m not sure that the title communicates this. My proposal goes for something less ideal, more tactic, more (tactil-, which means digital in spanish), a proposal to make the book be understood from the beggining as a “tool” more than as the new Messias is comming. INSIDE is a good concept also to work. INSIDE means capacity for the STRATEGY, REACTION CAPACITY, IDEA, WITTICISM. We have the tools to change. Now we need to change the BIG INSIDE. MASSIVE INSIDE. This can take us to think that all of us are similar and I hate that..well, I´m writting as I think…I´m a afraid this is an “autobranstorming”, it is raining only on muy head…moment to keep silence.
Don, I like all your work. I work in communications (I do campaings for politicians..mos of them social campaings..yuth, women, elderly, tecnologies,enviroment, etc. And you really say very interesting things for me.
Wow, the scale of this topic is awe-inspiring and overwhelming at the same time, but if anyone can tackle it I think you guys can based on what we've seen you can do. I very much look forward to reading this. Although not specifically mentioned above, I'm sure this probably includes aspects of Gov 2.0 or Democracy 2.0 too, right?
As far as a title goes, to me it's as if you're re-imagining how the world could work if you had the chance to start over but with the current technology available from the beginning. As such, how about:
“Blank Slate: Rethinking and Rebuilding the world's organizations and institutions for the age of networked intelligence”
…or scrap “networked intelligence” for something that more people will grasp easier (e.g. “social knowledge”, etc.)
or instead, taking the perspective that this new age gives more power back to the people and allows us to rebuild it in a new way, how about:
“Reclaiming Society: Envisioning a new world powered by networked intelligence”…or something to that affect.
Always the creative Yvonne. Great title. Are you still with HBS? – Lorin
I am able to align with your thoughts in both Wikinomics and Grown Up Digital and I really look forward to the critical mass that will be able to transform the world quickly into what you are envisaging for your nrw book. The continueing dramatic and traumatic events from financial collapses (now, Dubai), natural disasters, infectious diseases and deteriorating environment surrounding the world today seem to be indicating that we are now right in the eye of the storm. How about 'Riding the Storm' for a title?
Your continueing work spells hope for a better world order.
Too bad you used up the title “Paradigm Shift” already Don. The shift humanity is experiencing is a deeper shift in mindset than was described in your really useful earlier book. Following the successful precedent of the Rocky movies I think you would be quite justified in calling your new book – Paradigm Shift 2; or The Real Paradigm Shift -because I was too focused the first time; or how about Quantum Shift. Surely what's happening right now is that we have been seeing ourselves as particles and are only now seeing ourselves as being inter-connected waves……Hence the fact that EVERY institution is being turned upside down….
Sustainable Earth 3.0: How global collaboration can fix our broken institutions and create sustainable life on Earth.
This is an important book that needs to be written! Glad you're on it, Don.
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