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Greats surges of potential economic growth

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I'm talking about a wealth-creating potential that's associated with a set of technologies which allow innovation to happen in ways... I mean, innovation is always happening, throughout. You can't think of the market system without innovation, because that's the source of competition, that's the source of profit. So you begin by knowing that there's going to be innovation all the time. But I am wondering how these clusters of interrelated technologies, products, infrastructures, all these things, affect the potential for growth of the world economy and therefore for the welfare of the world population or for the welfare of some of the world population, which is how it's always been. But beginning with just England, we're now in a global world where the Chinese are beginning to have the hope that maybe they will have a future, and so are many others. So in fact somehow what we have had is a way in which the potential for wealth creation spreads across society and across geography in interrelated clusters that not only produce innovations. They produce innovations and they produce styles of living. They produce ways of organizing. They create ways of moving around, transportation of things, of goods and information. And in that sense they are creating ways of living and they're allowing the development of human society, in a way. So my problem is not the whole cycle, which in fact is not like this. Cycles are in a way sinusoidal curves. My cycle, as you know, begins down here. It goes slowly, then it goes up as much as it can and then it peters out. But when this is petering out another one is beginning from the bottom. So in fact my drawing of this thing is like surges. It is not little curves. It goes up. When it's over something young starts. And then it grows to maturity and then something young starts again. So it's a different concept and I had a long battle with having to accept Schumpeter at the beginning, because I have had this idea from the very start. My first thinking about this was during the energy crisis, when I just thought micro-electronics was going to replace oil as the shaper of technology. Technologies of the mass production era were completely shaped by oil, as far as I understood it. By cheap oil. So because oil will no longer be cheap, where is the next thing? And I found it. I found a very long sort of dossier in Business Week which said, some miracle, this and that, and it started talking about micro-electronics. It said, look, all the things it did, and it was relatively cheap for the time. This was about maybe 1976, when this thing came out, 1977, six years after the Intel micro-processor. I said, that's it. This is what's going to replace oil. And even from that moment I was always thinking of sets of technologies. And if you read my very early papers, 1983, I was talking about upswings and downswings, but I think my very first paper says that people are measuring the economy at the top, but in fact they don't realize that there is something going down, something going up, and that the curve you see is adding two different directions. And I always thought of it that way. My whole vision is about development. Not about innovation, not about economic growth, not about statistics. It's about something much deeper, which is: what are the forces that shape the way society develops. And what are the forces that shape the economy, of course, which is at the core of the forces that shape how society develops.

Added on 02 May 2017
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