Digital Capital: Harnessing the Power of Business Webs

Tapscott, Don; Lowy, Alex; Ticoll, David

Published by Harvard Business Review Press, 2000
ISBN 10: 1578511933 / ISBN 13: 9781578511938
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Synopsis: This work demonstrates how readers can become part of a business web- a group of businesses that work towards a unified goal. Such webs are replacing the traditional business structure to create wealth.

Review: God forbid that doing business and making money on the Internet should bear any resemblance whatsoever to the past millennium of bricks-and-mortar capitalism--that would be too easy. Nope, it's a whole different ball game now, and the new rule is: adapt or die. At least that's the message behind Digital Capital. From the three principal cyberconsultants at the Alliance for Converging Technologies (one of whom, Don Tapscott, authored the bestsellers The Digital Economy and Growing Up Digital), comes a paradigm for global takeover: the business web, or "b-web" for short. In their words, b-webs are "strategically aligned, multi-enterprise partner networks of producers, suppliers, service providers, infrastructure companies, and customers that conduct business communication and transactions via digital channels." Some examples are eBay, Cisco, Dell, MP3.com... in short, any enterprise that a) knows how to form lateral partnerships with other goods-or-service providers, and b) eliminates the role of planes, trains, and automobiles--not to mention lots of time, money, and human energy--by doing almost everything over the Internet. Not only do the authors provide a wealth of b-web case studies (including Charles Schwab, Priceline.com, Webvan, AT&T Solutions, and OptiMark in addition to those mentioned above), they outline a step by-step process for weaving a b-web of one's own.

Too often, Digital Capital's sound ideas come marinated in think-tank jargon so alienated from plain English as to be nearly impenetrable. Consider: "Disaggregation leads to 'disintermediation' and 'reintermediation'," which, believe it or not, isn't a line that French film theorists use in pick-up bars, but the simple statement that business webs manage to cut out a lot of the traditional steps between producers and customers. Now why couldn't they just have said that? No matter. After you nibble through the self-important MBA-speak, you'll find a smart look at how online shops are rewiring early 21st-century capitalism. --Timothy Murphy

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Title: Digital Capital: Harnessing the Power of ...
Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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Don Tapscott, David Ticoll, Alex Lowy
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