Andrew McAfee, the associate director of the Center for Digital Business at the MIT Sloan School of Management has revealed “the best economic news in human history,” claiming that we’re on the brink of the possibility of rising living standards for everyone on earth. He says that technological progress means humanity will soon solve the problem of ‘increasing scarcity’, meaning that there are, in theory, enough goods and wages for everyone in the world.
“We’re going to solve that,” he told an audience at the WorldPost Future Of Work Conference, “The problem that we’re not facing is a problem of not enough to go around.”
McAfee said that the industrial revolution of the 19th century meant that for the first time, human productivity can keep pace with the growing population, creating the possibility of a rising standard of living for everyone.
We have nearly reached the peak of this bounty, in an “ever-growing pie that left people better off”. Technological progress is “the best economic news in human history”, he said.
He has assessed the impact of major world events – like the foundations of religions and the the rise of the Roman Empire – to see if they had any effect on people’s income, and found that “none of them substantially changed the material conditions of humanity at all” except for the industrial revolution, whose inventions like the steam train allowed humans to be far more productive.