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Lesson Ten -
New Rules for the New Economy

Lesson Goals

·        New Rules for the New Economy

·        Understand Rural Innovation Diffusion

·        Grow Local and Global Collaborative Capacity

New Rules for the New Economy

With everything changing there are a few key points to keep in mind regarding the big picture. In a world of accelerating change, your strategy is to benefit from those resources that allow you to ride the wave instead of being dragged along. There is increasing importance on the value of relationships. The Internet increases our ability to maintain relationships in both quantity and quality. Social knowledge networks are increasingly important because in this age of information overload it is important to know who can help find what you need.

The information age is perhaps better described as the "Relationships Age" or the "Knowledge Age." The emerging service economy means helping people deal with information overload and the complexities of the modern day. You see this theme increasingly echoed by the slogans of major corporations. Gateway says, "You've got a friend in the business." Telstra says, "We're bringing everyone together." Earthlink says, "Earthlink revolves around you." Microsoft suddenly is focused on helping people realize their full potential. Finding better ways of helping people use technology more easily is the future of most businesses. Information condenses to knowledge which condenses to wisdom and value is created in a knowledge economy. Consider searching for the book, Rise of the Creative Class, by Richard Florida.

Understanding Rural Innovation Diffusion

The new economy is also called the "innovation economy," as indeed we're limited only by our imaginations. Understanding how innovations are shared across communities over time and how new ideas are developed is fundamental to developing ways to help people learn to benefit from communications technologies. The world would be a very different place if we all shared the same vision for the power at our fingertips and understood how collaborative capacity can dramatically empower individuals, communities, and businesses.

Changing Our Behavior and Walking the Walk

Corporations are now scrambling to develop their internal skills for online collaboration and online learning into intellectual and human capital advantages. Much can be learned by shadowing major corporations to see what they have learned and what they have yet to learn - and master. For years we've heard many businesses and organizations "talk the talk" about the benefits of online communications, but now corporations are finding they'll have to "walk the walk" if they are to keep abreast of their competition. Changing human communications behavior is not easy.

Around the world, governments at all levels are now talking about e-government. Information Technology is THE e-government leadership issue of the 21st century, creating and managing new forms of interaction. New levels of efficient communication between government and citizens - leading to greater accountability based on greater communication efficiency - are indeed viable. However, this will not be easy as knowledge is power and networking changes the fundamental dynamics of knowledge gathering and sharing which then affects the distribution of power. Electronic democracy and transnational activism are beginning to emerge as actual practices that can impact the distribution of power on a global scale.

Lifestyle Concerns Vs. "Business at the Speed of Thought"

Bill Gates wrote a book titled Business at the Speed of Thought. There is no upper limit to how efficiently business and learning can be conducted with global high-speed access between business partners and, eventually, consumers. At the same time, rural citizens in particular will question the issue of lifestyle. Many abhor a ringing cell phone at their side every moment. Others resent being pressured with having to make instant decisions. Collaborating with others to share information can make for a lighter load for all concerned. Use collaboration as a key strategy for dealing with information overload and the challenges of staying current.  The advancement of technological innovation can be summarized as "everything will be small, mobile, interconnected via wireless, and increasingly wearable." Info-apparel is a coming fad. Using technology to buy back enough time in the day to "have a life," will be a growing theme. There are real issues and tensions in making a life while making a living, and finding a workable collaborative balance is possible and fundamentally necessary.

Corporate and Ecommerce strategic initiatives to define and grow collaborative capacity are growing. Those which prove to be most successful, whether businesses or communities, will be the big winners over the coming decades. Social and economic value is strengthened by effective, ongoing sharing of the highest-value knowledge to meet their most urgent needs. Themes of inclusion, loyalty, cooperatives, purposeful community service, supporting global causes, and sharing the wealth are likely to dominate.

The issue of how best to support people using information technology to create value and capacity relates to both community sustainability and growing new business opportunities. As our sense of traditional community bonds decline, particularly in urban areas, the need for a supportive community is likely to re-emerge in the form of virtual communities of shared interest.

Possibly the most important lesson learned is people will only collaborate around a specific purpose or goal. Be prepared to answer their question:  "What's in it for me?" Virtual online communities of interest will become increasingly important for sustaining both traditional communities and Ecommerce communities.

The Emerging Knowledge-Based Economy Has Infinite Growth Potential

Unlike a product-based economy where supply and demand are tightly related, a knowledge economy can grow without limitation based on individuals’ motivations to learn, to learn to earn, and to spend (particularly on knowledge products). Creation of knowledge (media) products are limited only by our imagination and skills, not by finite natural resources. The big picture is the potential for a major reduction in poverty on a global scale IF we can learn to work together to unlock our joint human potential.

Completing This Course

Having now reached the final lesson for this online course, hopefully you now know that whatever you need - It's Out There!  With your searching skills, innovative tenacity, and the wealth of exposure to quality resources, which you've already achieved, you'll be in good shape for continued learning on any topic you desire.

The fact that you've demonstrated patience and perseverance to make it to this final lesson marks you as an early pioneer of Ecommerce and online self-empowerment.  Pat yourself on the back for a job well done!

Remember how intimidated you may have felt when you started this course? Think about how you might extend encouragement to others.

Hands-on Activities

Innovation Diffusion -Looking at the Process of Change
Read this article to understanding how we adapt to change.

Read the New Rules for the NEW New Economy

To Complete This Lesson

1.      Send an email to your instructor stating what strategies you're planning to adopt.

2.      Send an email to the listserv (send to isu-ecommerce@mm.isu.edu ) with the web address for at least one interesting article or resource related to rules for the new economy, rural innovation, or a related topic of your choosing.

Optional Skill-Builders

Note: Your instructor for this class keynoted a televised national conference in Jamaica, January 31, 2003, after moderating an online discussion of Jamaican government leaders for one month while teaching in Alaskan Native villages on the Yukon...at 50 below zero. After the Jamaican conference (details at www.ictjamaica.com) he continued to support multiple project planners by sharing resources and grant templates and online curriculum, such as this course.

October 6, 2003, Frank keynoted a national conference in Australia for which he wrote the "wings" paper below to share at the conference as a way of broadly sharing key ideas and resources. After the conference, the Australian government flew Frank to a dozen communities meeting with ministers of government as well as community leaders in multiple Aboriginal villages. The "sparks" paper below is the report on these visits with key recommendations for the 26-40 billion dollar privatization of the communications infrastructure all across Australia. Frank has continued to mentor multiple Australian indigenous project leaders and government staff, online. During the creation of this online course, a 3 million dollar grant was received by the Montana Job Training Partnership which includes Lone Eagle Consulting as the Rural Ecommerce and Telework Strategies trainer for the next five years.  If you'd like to learn more about past, present, or future Lone Eagle activities, you're welcome to review them at http://lone-eagles.com/new.htm

If you remember nothing else from this course, please remember:

You're limited only by your imagination.
Albert Einstein.

Many articles have been written on the various communities associated with Lone Eagle Consulting and are available at http://lone-eagles.com/.  The best is yet to come and let's hope you're planning to be a part of it!

Authenticating Rural Internet and Broadband Benefits - A Reality Check
http://lone-eagles.com/reality-check.htm (4 pages)
Written for the Australian Government, September 2003, in regarding to a national effort to bring Internet connectivity to every community. At issue is whether people will learn to benefit and whether government will guarantee continued Internet access if the costs for serving remote users exceeds the revenues from remote subscribers.

Australian Trip Report
http://lone-eagles.com/sparks.htm (12 pages)
After presenting for a government conference, a ten day series of visits around Australia resulted in this report to the Australian government regarding the future of the nation's communities.

For continued learning consider the advanced course “Rural Ecommerce and Telework Strategies” which includes creating an online resume and a special certificate of completion.  It is supported by a 211-page handbook with extensive resources including rural community leadership resources, K-12 integration, a local train-the-trainer model, rural community grant templates and grant-writing resources, and more.  The new updated version will be available January 2004.  For more information on the advanced course and the printed handbook go to http://lone-eagles.com/ecommerce-registration.htm.  The printed handbook is also online at http://lone-eagles.com/eguide.htm.