‘Building the New Economy’ by MIT Sloan School

‘Building the New Economy’: MIT Sloan School researchers map out a blueprint to help individuals, infrastructure, and institutions withstand crises, from wars to pandemics

New digital technologies can help build resilient systems and empower communities

News provided by MIT Sloan School of Management, May 22, 2020, 07:30 ET

CAMBRIDGE, MA, May 22, 2020 — How can we make our financial system less fragile and more transparent? How can we make our healthcare infrastructure less reactive and more agile? And what can we do to create more robust civic institutions that work for all of us—not just those at the top?

A new book from researchers at the MIT Sloan School of Management provides answers and insights to those pressing questions. The book, Building the New Economy, is edited by Professor Alex “Sandy” Pentland, leader within the Sloan Initiative for Digital Economy and founder of the MIT-wide Connection Science program, Alexander Lipton, former Managing Director of Quantitative Solutions at Bank of America and Connection Science Fellow at MIT, and Thomas Hardjono, CTO of Connection Science and Technical Director of the MIT Trust-Data Consortium.

“With each new crisis, be it war, pandemic, natural disaster, or even the invention of a major technology, there has been a need to reinvent the relationships between individuals, businesses, and governments. The COVID-19 health emergency and ensuing economic turmoil, joined with the tsunami of data and AI technologies—is such a crisis,” says Prof. Pentland. Continue reading

Letter to Business Owners across America

We are all facing a forced economic shutdown, because of the coronavirus pandemic, but the demand will rise strongly within 3 months once the economy starts again. You must plan and prepare for the growth surge that is ahead. There is a huge opportunity ahead in various B2B and B2C businesses!

We believe that most small and medium businesses, or SMBs, can double their annual sales over the next 12 to 24 months and this is possible by focusing on the target markets that your business has, and also, maximizing the visibility of your business in front of your target customers. And for this purpose, we have social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter that are extremely useful to showcase your products and services. We have experience in doing that for businesses over the last 12 years, and that experience will be available to all our customers across America.

In the current scenario with the Coronavirus pandemic, there is/there will be huge demand for construction of various types. So among the different kinds of industries that we are engaged with, we are seeing a huge increase in construction projects of different types. And if you are a construction worker, your challenge is probably not as much as sales but in getting the funds to, to execute the projects that may come to you in the next 6 months.

And the same is true for any company involved in protective clothing, masks, disinfectants, soaps, and any other kind of medical products and medical supplies that are in huge demand currently. But the manufacturing capabilities of such products is not in the US currently because all the manufacturing has gone to China over the last 20 years. So suddenly, there is a need to rebuild some manufacturing capacity within America in an urgent way, and utilize that manufacturing capacity to provide essential medical and healthcare supplies, as well as consumer supplies related to hygiene and healthcare.

So these manufacturing capacities are in huge demand, and small businesses should orient themselves to produce these products if they have the ability. And we understand that many don’t have, because over the last 20 years, a lot of manufacturing work has gone to China, and the majority of the industries or service industries in the US and of course, the farming is very much there as a backbone.

But in this case, the need is for medical supplies and hygiene products, which are mostly imported today. And there will be higher demand, for the next several years, to produce within America because the current health risk is not a one-off event. Medical experts think that this kind of new virus maybe a recurring event for the next few years until society develops immunity against the virus. So businesses have opportunities for that purpose.

But independent of what industry you are, whether it’s a cafeteria or a restaurant that has been hard hit by all the lockdowns and closures, or any other form of business, we can work to get your sales and marketing plan in place, and we can also connect you to finance companies who will be happy to provide very timely finance to you to grow your business.

Now if your sales are looking good, and there are new opportunities you want to capture by increasing your capacity or buying new equipment, often businesses run into the funding constraint that the finances are not available to rapidly utilize available opportunities. For example, there may be a construction project, which needs new equipment but the finance may take a long time if you approach banks, but there are private finance companies who are ready to lend at very attractive/nominal rates within 3-5 days. Such a solution helps in most cases.

Of course, the government is also giving various forms of grants and we should think of using them, but there is finance that is available from multiple sides that you can explore through us. Thank you. Best Wishes, Shankar