The global financial crisis of 2008 was a wake-up call for the world. But while many people were calling for updated regulations and even the breakup or nationalization of the big banks, it became clear to us that restoring long-term confidence in the financial services industry would require more than government intervention and new rules.
The world needed a profoundly new approach to governing the global economy, including a new modus operandi for financial services based on business principles like transparency, integrity and collaboration.
Evidence soon mounted that the crisis was spreading to other sectors. The Gulf Oil Spill, a sovereign debt crisis, the failure of world leaders to forge a meaningful agreement on climate change in Copenhagen. One event after another underscored the impotence of our conventional approaches to solving global problems. It seems that many of the institutions that have served us well for decades—even centuries—are frozen and unable to move forward.
And yet, through all of the haze and the turmoil we see cause for genuine optimism. In every corner of the globe, a powerful new model of economic and social innovation is sweeping across all sectors—one where people with drive, passion and expertise take
advantage of new Web-based tools to get more involved in making the world more prosperous, just and sustainable.
And just as millions have contributed to Wikipedia—and thousands still make ongoing contributions to large-scale collaborations like Linux and the human genome project—we are convinced that there is now an historic opportunity to marshal human skill, ingenuity and intelligence on a mass scale to re-evaluate and re-position many of our institutions for the coming decades and for future generations.
A follow-up to Wikinomics, the best-selling management book of 2007, our new book Macrowikinomics offers nothing less than a game plan for all of us to fix a broken world.
Drawing on an entirely new set of original research conducted with countless collaborators in fields such as healthcare, science, education, energy, government and the media, we tell the stories of some of the world’s most dynamic innovators, from a global citizen’s movement working to reverse the tide of disruptive climate change to for-profit startups that are turning industries ranging from music to transportation on their head.
We argue that collaborative innovation is not only transforming our economy but all of society and its many institutions. Now the onus is now on each of us to lead the transformation in our households, communities and workplaces. After all, the potential for new models of collaboration does not end with the production of software, media, entertainment and culture. Why not open source government, education, science, the production of energy, and even health care?
As this book shows, these are not idle fantasies, but real opportunities that the new world of wikinomics makes possible.