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New Thinking for the New Economy

As business evolves, so too does Berkeley Haas

Dean Rich Lyons, BS 82, speaking to undergrads at their August orientation
Dean Rich Lyons, BS 82, speaking to undergrads at their August orientation

Take a look at the Berkeley Haas homepage and you’ll see this phrase: New thinking for the new economy. What we mean by this is largely due to the profoundly disruptive nature of tech. It’s no longer a sector, as it was in the 1990s. We’ve seen the rise of marketplace, or platform, businesses: Uber/Lyft, Airbnb, Blockchain, and others. These are transformations that have no similarly scaled analog.

Now, tech as a separator of winners and losers is pervasively important across all industries. Witness CEOs of airlines stating that they are tech companies with wings, or Jeff Immelt of General Electric predicting it will be a top 10 software developer by 2020, or the importance of data science in driving competition across companies. These are not changes that will be reversed with a tough business cycle—they are here to stay.

CEOs these days need to be digital and tech savvy. They need to be able to interrogate the company’s analysis around technology. And they need to appreciate how technology can drive future competitive conditions to be able to set direction effectively.

Why new thinking? I’ll bet you never learned about the economics of networks or the economics of information and information goods in Econ 1. The reality is that the economy is less and less about goods and more about services and information. The fundamentals still apply, but we have to advance our thinking to these new tools.

And to think: This business school, in this place, and this time in world history. Can you imagine a more interesting time to be a part of Haas?

Go Bears,
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Rich Lyons, BS 82
lyons@haas.berkeley.edu | @richlyons

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