Andrew McAfee

Co-Director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy.

Principal Research Scientist at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Andrew McAfee is a top technology speaker, futurist, author, and one of the most influential people in IT. His research investigates how IT changes the way companies perform, organize themselves, and compete.

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Andrew McAfee is the Co-Founder and Co-Director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy and a Principal Research Scientist at the MIT Sloan School of Management. He studies how computer technologies are changing business, the economy, and society. Andrew McAfee studies the ways that information technology (IT) affects businesses and business as a whole. His research investigates how IT changes the way companies perform, organize themselves, and compete. At a higher level, his work also investigates how computerization affects competition, society, the economy, and the workforce.

He and Erik Brynjolfsson are co-authors of the book “Race Against the Machine: How the Digital Revolution is Accelerating Innovation”, “Driving Productivity, and Irreversibly Transforming Employment and the Economy”. This book brings together a range of data, examples, and research to show that the average US worker is being left behind by advances in technology.

Andrew Mcafee coined the phrase “Enterprise 2.0” in a spring 2006 Sloan Management Review article to describe the use of Web 2.0 tools and approaches by businesses. He also began blogging at that time, both about Enterprise 2.0 and about his other research. McAfee’s blog is widely read, becoming at times one of the 10,000 most popular in the world (according to Technorati).

He has authored or co-authored more than 100 articles, case studies, and other materials for students and teachers of technology, and has been voted one of the 100 Most Influential People in IT, one of the 50 most influential people in business IT, and one of the 100 most influential executives in the technology industry.

He was previously a professor at Harvard Business School and a fellow at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. He received his Doctorate from Harvard Business School, and completed two Master of Science and two Bachelor of Science degrees at MIT.

The Robot Economy.

Andrew McAfee’s robot economy keynote is a fascinating discussion about the future role of humans and robots in the economy and labor market. He predicts that there will be more jobs for machines, not people. From multi-language translation services to algorithms, modern digital technologies are already affecting people’s abilities to earn a living. Digital tools are displaying skills they never have before, and as a result, are starting to replace humans. Programs like Siri for the iPhone are not perfect, but they are good enough to be replacing humans.

McAfee points out though that robots cannot replace humans in the entrepreneurial sense, and that people need to be investing more time in these types of endeavors. He also argues that the transition from a human labor market to one sustained by robots will be the hardest one society will ever experience and managing that will require the complexities of a human brain.

What will future jobs look like?

Information Technology

Artificial Intelligence

How IT Changes the Way Companies Perform

The Digital Revolution

Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future.

We live in strange times. A machine plays the strategy game Go better than any human; upstarts like Apple and Google destroy industry stalwarts such as Nokia; ideas from the crowd are repeatedly more innovative than corporate research labs.

MIT’s Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson know what it takes to master this digital-powered shift: we must rethink the integration of minds and machines, of products and platforms, and of the core and the crowd. In all three cases, the balance now favors the second element of the pair, with massive implications for how we run our companies and live our lives.

In the tradition of agenda-setting classics like Clay Christensen’s The Innovator’s Dilemma, McAfee and Brynjolfsson deliver both a penetrating analysis of a new world and a toolkit for thriving in it. For startups and established businesses, or for anyone interested in what the future holds, Machine, Platform, Crowd is essential reading.

Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future.

The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies.

In recent years, Google’s autonomous cars have logged thousands of miles on American highways and IBM’s Watson trounced the best human Jeopardy! players. Digital technologies―with hardware, software, and networks at their core―will in the near future diagnose diseases more accurately than doctors can, apply enormous data sets to transform retailing, and accomplish many tasks once considered uniquely human.
In The Second Machine Age MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee―two thinkers at the forefront of their field―reveal the forces driving the reinvention of our lives and our economy. As the full impact of digital technologies is felt, we will realize immense bounty in the form of dazzling personal technology, advanced infrastructure, and near-boundless access to the cultural items that enrich our lives.

Amid this bounty will also be wrenching change. Professions of all kinds―from lawyers to truck drivers―will be forever upended. Companies will be forced to transform or die. Recent economic indicators reflect this shift: fewer people are working, and wages are falling even as productivity and profits soar.

Drawing on years of research and up-to-the-minute trends, Brynjolfsson and McAfee identify the best strategies for survival and offer a new path to prosperity. These include revamping education so that it prepares people for the next economy instead of the last one, designing new collaborations that pair brute processing power with human ingenuity, and embracing policies that make sense in a radically transformed landscape.

A fundamentally optimistic book, The Second Machine Age alters how we think about issues of technological, societal, and economic progress.

The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies.

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