A new era, a new age is upon us. NO, it is not the Age of Aquarius Mr. Comedian. It is called the New Economy and not the post-recession economy as it was previously named. It signifies the shift of industry and production paradigms, ushering a new structure appropriate for today’s technological advancements and ease of communication. Here are a few of the characteristics of this new economic environment.
From Production to Service
As a ‘living’ example stands Detroit, Michigan, also known as the Motor City. I put quotations around living because unfortunately not only does Detroit stand as a monument to the outsourcing of industrial jobs, it has also become the poster-child of urban decay. For decades Detroit was the car manufacturing center of the United States, and one of the biggest industrial metropolises in the world. In the 1950s, and at the height of Detroit’s affluence it was populated by 1.86 million people. Today a meagre 700.000 claim it as their home. Due to multiple financial and fuel crises, Detroit’s auto industry was forced to outsource their factories abroad. Now other American cities have come to pick up where Detroit left off. Cities such as San Antonio, Texas, Fort Collins, Colorado, Austin and Texas have established themselves as technological and service hubs and are voted some of the healthiest economies in the USA.
Longevity and efficiency
In previous years efficiency and maximization of profit margins were top tier matters. In this new economy, industry has come to the realization that efficiency should be balanced with sustainability. The reason behind this shift in perception has been the exhaustion of finite resources necessary for industrial production. This means that the costs of those finite resources increase as they become rarer and alternative materials are needed. Inadvertently this results in more sustainable, environmentally friendly alternatives being used instead of non-renewable resources. This creates a surprising overlap of industrial and environmental interests.
Although this has been an observable characteristic for the past two decades, the pace at which change happens today is exponentially more rapid than before. Changes in demographics, available technology and even abrupt environmental changes can be observed. In order to stay relevant personal cultivation, education and specialization are going to be necessary and obligatory in the future.
The workspace like we’ve never seen it before
According to the Kaufman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity, start-up activity has surpassed the rapid torrent of the early 2000s dotcom bubble. Not only that but start-ups are receiving more funding than ever before. Also a shift in individual motivations have brought on this change. More and more people are realizing the value of pursuing something they are passionate about in lieu of just working for a salary.
Beyond this insurgence of entrepreneurship we are also seeing large groups of individuals that work from home, instead of the traditional 9-5 workday.
All these factors have created the groundwork or might have even ushered in a new economy. As this economy matures and stabilizes it will be more than evident that the recession wasn’t in fact a recession but a transition into (hopefully) a healthier economy.
If you would like to share your perception on the new economy please feel free to share your point of view below.