is the author of "The Third Industrial Revolution" and has a reputation that speaks for itself.
"In his new book, The Zero Marginal Cost Society, Rifkin uncovers a paradox at the heart of capitalism that has propelled it to greatness but is now slowly taking it to its death—the inherent entrepreneurial dynamism of competitive markets that relentlessly drives productivity up and marginal costs down. (Marginal cost is the cost of producing additional units of a good or service, if fixed costs are not counted.) Now, a formidable new technology infrastructure—the Internet of Things (IoT)—is emerging with the potential of pushing large segments of economic life to near zero marginal cost in the years ahead, making a wide range of goods and services available for nearly free, allowing prosumers to bypass capitalist markets altogether.
Billions of sensors are already being attached to natural resources, production lines, logistics networks, recycling flows, and implanted in homes, offices, stores, vehicles, and even human beings, feeding Big Data into an IoT global neural network. The Big Data is being processed by advanced analytics and turned into predictive algorithms to speed efficiency, dramatically increase productivity, and lower the marginal cost of producing and distributing products and services to near zero across the global economy. As a result, observes Rifkin, profits are beginning to dry up, property rights are weakening, and the conventional notion of economic scarcity is giving way to the possibility of abundance as more and more sectors of the economy are drawn into the zero marginal cost web. The wildcard is insuring data security and the protection of personal privacy in an open, transparent, and globally connected world.
The plummeting of marginal costs is spawning a hybrid economy—part capitalist market and part Collaborative Commons—with far reaching implications for society. Rifkin describes how hundreds of millions of people are already transferring parts of their economic lives to the global Collaborative Commons. “Prosumers” are making and sharing their own information, entertainment, green energy, and 3D-printed products at near zero marginal cost. They are also sharing cars, homes, clothes and other items via social media sites, rentals, redistribution clubs, and cooperatives at low or near zero marginal cost. Students are enrolling in free massive open online courses (MOOCs) that operate at near zero marginal cost. Social entrepreneurs are even bypassing the banking establishment and using crowdfunding to finance humane businesses as well as creating alternative currencies in the fledgling sharing economy. In this new world, social capital is as important as financial capital, access trumps ownership, sustainability supersedes consumerism, cooperation ousts competition, and “exchange value” in the capitalist marketplace is increasingly replaced by “sharable value” on the Collaborative Commons.
Rifkin concludes that capitalism will be with us for the foreseeable future, albeit in an increasingly streamlined role, primarily as an aggregator of network services and solutions, allowing it to flourish as a powerful niche player in the coming era. However, it will no longer reign over the economy by the second half of the 21st Century. We are, Rifkin says, entering a world beyond markets where we are learning how to live together in an increasingly interdependent global Collaborative Commons."
Including publishing practices of toll access access publishers
Thanks for this meticulous example
Between 40 and 50 per cent of the adult population in Belgium and Colombia are overweight, reports the Watch 2014.
On the other hand, agribusiness and financial investors are taking control of natural resources and undermining the rights and food sovereignty of local communities and small-scale food producers. Such practices are promoted and condoned by governments in the name of 'development'."
Journalology: iMed Publishing fell for Bohannon's chocolate hoax, but th...
The first introduction to iMed Publishing (iMed.pub) for most people was not a good one. In October 2013, John Bohannon — a self-styled 'gon
Pasteur4OA – Kick off meeting | Open Access Working Group
Sharing the results of publicly funded research
Free Permaculture Design Course - Regenerative Leadership Institute
The world's first free online permaculture design course with Larry Korn. Learn permaculture from the world's top experts from the comfort o
PLoS ONE: Quantifying the Impact and Relevance of Scientific Research
PLoS ONE: an inclusive, peer-reviewed, open-access resource from the PUBLIC LIBRARY OF SCIENCE. Reports of well-performed scientific studies
Open Science and the Future of Publishing – a round-up of this week’s de...
Earlier this week, a group from the Materials Science department at Oxford University brought together prominent figures in the current open
Enabling access to knowledge in developing and transition countries | EIFL
Working in collaboration with libraries in more than 60 developing and transition countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America, EIFL
Save Scholarly Ideas, Not the Publishing Industry (a rant)
The scholarly publishing industry used to offer a service. It used to be about making sure that knowledge was shared as broadly as possible