Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital: The Dynamics of Bubbles and Golden Ages illustrated edition
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--Kevin Kelly, Wired Magazine
'Carlota Perez's insightful analysis of the rapid growth and diffusion of new technologies in general, and Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) in particular, is a welcome antidote to the bullish and ahistorical hyperbole of the datacom era. . . Do read the book. It is important. It is accessible. It is well presented. It is also fun.
--Raphie Kaplinsky, Technovation
'Perez focuses on well-defined issues, for instance the emergence of new technologies, how they bring about an infectious frenzy, how they reshape the channels through which flows investment capital . . . There are many enlightening findings in this book . . . I heartily subscribe to the assessment made by Chris Freeman, the author of the preface, that this is indeed a ''thought-provoking and stimulating book which should be widely read.'' '
--Bertrand M. Roehner, EH.Net
From the Inside Flap
It was Carlota Perez in the early 1980s, who designated the major changes in technology systems, such as mechanization, electrification or computerization, as "changes of techno-economic paradigm" a designation which has since been widely adopted. In this book she offers many new insights into these complex processes of social, economic and technological change. She traces the interactions between that part of the economy commonly known as "financial capital" and the evolution of technologies. Although this was an important aspect of Schumpeters original work, it has been neglected by his followers, so that the book fills an important gap in the literature on business cycles and innovations. I most strongly commend it to all those attempting to understand the past and future evolution of technology and the economy. Christopher Freeman, SPRU Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex, UK and Maastricht University, The Netherlands
Before I read this book I thought that the history of technology was to borrow Churchills phrase merely "one damned thing after another". Not so. Carlota Perez shows us that historically technological revolutions arrive with remarkable regularity, and that economies react to them in predictable phases. Her argument provides much needed perspective not just on history, but on our own times. And especially on our own information revolution. W. Brian Arthur, Santa Fe Institute, New Mexico
This is a smashing book. It informs us that the emphasis on finance that marked the excesses of the 1990s has historically occurred with each great wave of new technologies, only to later shift the focus back to production. Fascinating. May the shift happen again soon. Richard R. Nelson, Columbia University, US
- Publisher : Edward Elgar Pub; illustrated edition (October 31, 2002)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 224 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1840649224
- ISBN-13 : 978-1840649222
- Item Weight : 1.05 pounds
- Dimensions : 9.5 x 1 x 6.5 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,182,205 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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But overall it does provide a useful framework for the role of finance in the various bubbles since the 1800s, at least the bubbles that were technology based.
Very accessible to an interested reader. A tad more than a modicum of economics background is all that is needed, but if you have much more, you'll not be bored either, I imagine.
I'm in a startup and as I read thru the various chapters, I am constantly analyzing about how our company and target market fit into this framework.
Useful thought exercises.
With this book in hand you will find yourself saying, "How could anyone have missed the Internet 'crash' of 2000?" Of course it had to happen. Then you will be asking yourself, "When will we get past the frenzied hype about these technologies so we can finally make all this really useful?" Just as Perez has been asking.
Throughout the 1980's and 1990's as a Wall Street analyst following technology companies, I regularly polled economists about the impact of computers and networks. At first there was no response. Later, we all began to hear about the "New Economy" and how everything had completely changed in economics. Yes, this was a pretty transparent attempt to rationalize stock valuations that had gone into orbit. In many ways it was even worse than no response at all.
It wasn't until I read Technological Revolutions and began to look into why mainstream economists have had so little to say about technology, that I learned there was a fight over all this in the 1930/40s. Many were involved but Harvard's Joseph Schumpeter who authored Business Cycles in 1938 putting technology at center stage- was among the losers. Future generations of economists rarely delved into Schumpeter's heterodoxy. Fortunately, Perez revives the Schumpeterian tradition with a powerful reinterpretation and combines economics and technology with a clear and convincing voice.
History is a pattern, not an endless repeating cycle but a distinct and discernable pattern. Perez has given us the outlines of that pattern, making all our jobs a great deal easier. Whether you're in the technology business or in finance or policy or just trying to make intelligent choices in a complicated world, you will benefit and learn from this book. What comes next is going to be important, on many levels, and understanding that in the past others successfully faced similar challenges - not just once but with each technological revolution -- should help to give us courage to face our own.
Top reviews from other countries
The current cycle that we are experiencing started in 1971, so depending on when you were born you might find this to be a revelatory text, explaining much of what has happened over the course of your life. In my case for example, as a 40 something, that's my entire life encapsulated as the 1st half of one cycle. Moreover, we are now at the most challenging and important part of the cycle when the fundamental underlying realities of our society need to be radically overhauled, primarily through intelligent governance. If you want to understand how the various power groups of the world are intersecting across the capitalist playing field, right now, this book is essential reading.