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Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy

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In Information Rules, authors Shapiro and Varian reveal that many classic economic concepts can provide the insight and understanding necessary to succeed in the information age. They argue that if managers seriously want to develop effective strategies for competing in the new economy, they must understand the fundamental economics of information technology. Whether In Information Rules, authors Shapiro and Varian reveal that many classic economic concepts can provide the insight and understanding necessary to succeed in the information age. They argue that if managers seriously want to develop effective strategies for competing in the new economy, they must understand the fundamental economics of information technology. Whether information takes the form of software code or recorded music, is published in a book or magazine, or even posted on a website, managers must know how to evaluate the consequences of pricing, protecting, and planning new versions of information products, services, and systems. The first book to distill the economics of information and networks into practical business strategies, Information Rules is a guide to the winning moves that can help business leaders navigate successfully through the tough decisions of the information economy.


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In Information Rules, authors Shapiro and Varian reveal that many classic economic concepts can provide the insight and understanding necessary to succeed in the information age. They argue that if managers seriously want to develop effective strategies for competing in the new economy, they must understand the fundamental economics of information technology. Whether In Information Rules, authors Shapiro and Varian reveal that many classic economic concepts can provide the insight and understanding necessary to succeed in the information age. They argue that if managers seriously want to develop effective strategies for competing in the new economy, they must understand the fundamental economics of information technology. Whether information takes the form of software code or recorded music, is published in a book or magazine, or even posted on a website, managers must know how to evaluate the consequences of pricing, protecting, and planning new versions of information products, services, and systems. The first book to distill the economics of information and networks into practical business strategies, Information Rules is a guide to the winning moves that can help business leaders navigate successfully through the tough decisions of the information economy.

30 review for Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy

  1. 4 out of 5

    Oliver

    I don't understand why there hasn't been a second edition of this book! It's great, but its usefulness can only go so far due to the fact that it came out in 1999. I would love to see an updated edition.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Raphael Leiteritz

    This book changed my life. A bit old now but basically enabled the whole internet economy.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Arif

    The most important resource is not currently derived from natural resources or capital again, but it is in knowledge. (Drucker 1993). Economic information or digital economy no longer relies on fixed assets, but on the intangible assets such as knowledge and information. The rapid development of information technology has provided a fundamental change in business structure and economy. This book outlines some important issues related to the information economy: for pricing information goods The most important resource is not currently derived from natural resources or capital again, but it is in knowledge. (Drucker 1993). Economic information or digital economy no longer relies on fixed assets, but on the intangible assets such as knowledge and information. The rapid development of information technology has provided a fundamental change in business structure and economy. This book outlines some important issues related to the information economy: for pricing information goods (pricing information), differentiation of products for various customers (versioning information), management ownership (rights management), recognition of the lock in and management (recognizing and managing lock in), network effects and positive feedback (positive feedback and network), cooperation and compatibility (cooperation and compatibility), competition in the standardization of information products (waging a standards war), and policies related to the information sector ( information policy)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lino's Version

    The insights in this book are still excellent almost 20 years after it was written. The examples are a little dated - but like a time machine to the tech past Well laid out with very good additional readings Additional thoughts: Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy • Carl Shapiro • Hal R. Varian • Copyright 1999 In Information Rules, authors Shapiro and Varian reveal that many classic economic concepts can provide the insight and understanding necessary to succeed in the The insights in this book are still excellent almost 20 years after it was written. The examples are a little dated - but like a time machine to the tech past Well laid out with very good additional readings Additional thoughts: Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy • Carl Shapiro • Hal R. Varian • Copyright 1999 In Information Rules, authors Shapiro and Varian reveal that many classic economic concepts can provide the insight and understanding necessary to succeed in the information age. They argue that if managers seriously want to develop effective strategies for competing in the new economy, they must understand the fundamental economics of information technology. Whether information takes the form of software code or recorded music, is published in a book or magazine, or even posted on a website, managers must know how to evaluate the consequences of pricing, protecting, and planning new versions of information products, services, and systems. The first book to distill the economics of information and networks into practical business strategies, Information Rules is a guide to the winning moves that can help business leaders navigate successfully through the tough decisions of the information economy. https://hbr.org/product/information-r... Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy Information Goods -- from movies and music to software code and stock quotes - have supplanted industrial goods as the key drivers of world markets. Confronted by this New Economy, many instinctively react by searching for a corresponding New Economics to guide their business decisions. Executives charged with rolling out cutting-edge software products or on-line versions of their magazines are tempted to abandon the classic lessons of economics, and rely instead on an ever changing roster of trends, buzzwords, and analogies that promise to guide strategy in the information age. Not so fast, say authors Carl Shapiro and Hal R. Varian. In "Information Rules" they warn managers, "Ignore basic economic principles at your own risk. Technology changes. Economic laws do not." Understanding these laws and their relevance to information goods is critical when fashioning today's successful competitive strategies. Information Rules introduces and explains the economic concepts needed to navigate the evolving network economy. "Information Rules" will help business leaders and policy makers - from executives in the entertainment, publishing, hardware, and software industries to lawyers, finance professionals, and writers -- make intelligent decisions about their information assets. https://books.google.ca/books/about/I... This boo should have been required reading during the Dot.com era and is still full of useful insights. Some of the examples are a bit dated but nostalgia aside, still appear valid. Notes: 3. Information is costly to produce but cheep to reproduce. 4. Price information according to its value not its cost 10. Focus not just on your competitors but also on your collaborators and complementors. 14: Network effects lead to demand side economies of scale and positive feedback 18: How we differ: We seek models, not trends; concepts, not vocabulary; and analysis not analogies. We firmly believe the models, the concepts and the analysis will provide you with a deeper understanding of the fundamental forces at work… 21: Information is costly to produce but cheap to reproduce 25: Differentiate your produce 28: Reduce average cost by increasing volume through reuse and resale 40: Personalize pricing 53: Chapter 3: Versioning Information 56: Information is like an oyster it has its greatest value when fresh • Not if you practice ‘harvesting strategy’ which keeps it fresh and growing and you can continually – but appropriately – harvest fruit 72: If you can’t decide how many versions to have, choose three 76: Use bundling to introduce new products to consumers 112: The total cost of switching = costs the customer nears + costs the new supplier bears 123: Keep control of information and databases by using standardized formats and interfaces 129: Loyalty programs will proliferate 138: Bargain hard during initial negotiations, emphasizing your influence as a customer 144: Recognize that your locked-in customers are valuable assets 146: Revenue from your locked-in customers is the return on the investment you have made in them 153: Offer discounts to influential buyers 157: Offer value-added information services to deepen your relationship with your customers 161: Sell products that are complementary to your installed product base 175: The notion of positive feedback is crucial to understanding the economics of information technology 177: Positive feedback is a more potent force in the network economy than ever before • Social media has made this even more significant • 80/20 (PFactor) has become 96/4 or 98/2 184: Metcalfe’s law: The value of a network goes up as the square of the number of users Therefore: m * (n-1) = n^2 – n If the value of a network to a single use is $1, then a network the size of 10 has a total value of $100 Value of a network of 100 is worth $10,000 244: Try to shift the risk of failure to a large customer or, even better, the government 258: To compete effectively in network markets, you need allies 259: Find your natural allies… 270: Key assets in network markets: 1. Control over an installed base of customers 2. Intellectual property rights 3. Ability to innovate 4. First mover advantage 5. Manufacturing abilities 6. Strength in complements 7. Reputation and brand name Don’t forget that customers as well as technology suppliers can control key assets too. 280: Once you’ve sold to everyone, you need improvements to drive upgrade sales 286: If you fall behind, target a market niche or interconnect with the larger network

  5. 4 out of 5

    Asher Abramson

    A hell of a read. The whole premise of the book is that it can’t go out of date. It’s right. These are economic principles that apply to any information good. Sure; the examples are from 1999. They illustrate the ideas well. Highly recommend.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Giorgos

    Not bad but I think the social media have changed a bit the information flow or rather disrupt it and this book may be a bit outdated....but I may be wrong

  7. 4 out of 5

    Eric Stevens

    Standard supply and demand models aren't as relevant to IT as other industries because of the often intangible nature of IT solutions, discriminatory pricing, high network effects and lock in. This book applies the fundamentals of economic theory in a practical manner that is specific to the Information Technology industry. While being useful as a strategy guide for varies common economic situation for IT business managers, it is also enlightening as a customer as to power held by large Standard supply and demand models aren't as relevant to IT as other industries because of the often intangible nature of IT solutions, discriminatory pricing, high network effects and lock in. This book applies the fundamentals of economic theory in a practical manner that is specific to the Information Technology industry. While being useful as a strategy guide for varies common economic situation for IT business managers, it is also enlightening as a customer as to power held by large orginizations.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Enzo Nicolini

    Muy buen análisis de las implicancias de las tecnologías de la información en la economía y la administración, sin artilugios marketeros y con rigor académico. Lo único cuestionable se este libro es por qué no tiene una segunda edición con sus referencias tecnológicas actualizadas. Los más de 20 años desde su publicación se notan.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Dominik

    A classic. Despite the dated references, the content and lessons of this book are timeless.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kirill Sukhonosenko

    Great reading Topics - differential pricing - zero marginal cost economy - lock in - role of standards - policy making - network externalities and positive feedback

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rex

    Technology changes frequently, economic laws does not. The authors express their view on information economy from information, technology, and policy aspects. Information has a unique cost structure and therefore it requires strategic management of intellectual property. Information is also an "experienced" good and its value varies to different buyers and at different times. In the information age, information is abundant but attention is limited. These characteristics influences the technology Technology changes frequently, economic laws does not. The authors express their view on information economy from information, technology, and policy aspects. Information has a unique cost structure and therefore it requires strategic management of intellectual property. Information is also an "experienced" good and its value varies to different buyers and at different times. In the information age, information is abundant but attention is limited. These characteristics influences the technology trend and marketing strategies. Technology that carries the information serves the purpose of lock-in. Therefore we see system competition at various levels. Managing lock-in is sophisticated and the authors have given detailed examples in the book. Although not unique to information economy, network externalities is a prominent effect. Various strategies leveraging standards are also explained which I find very interesting since this links to all the previous characteristics of information economy. Lastly, policies cannot be ignored by any big information players. When market "fails", regulation and policies will have legitimate interventions.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Marks54

    This is still the best introduction to the economics of the Internet and businesses that use the Internet. It is written by two of the top economists anywhere -- Varian has written one of the top texts on micro economic theory and is not the chief economist for Google. This is a clear and really insightful trade book that is much more informative and most economic and business texts. It is supported by a terrific web site (The Information Economy) and there are supporting materials available for This is still the best introduction to the economics of the Internet and businesses that use the Internet. It is written by two of the top economists anywhere -- Varian has written one of the top texts on micro economic theory and is not the chief economist for Google. This is a clear and really insightful trade book that is much more informative and most economic and business texts. It is supported by a terrific web site (The Information Economy) and there are supporting materials available for this book, in case you want the more detailed versions of their argument.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Deniss Ojastu

    An excellent overview of the economic laws and good-case business practices in the information industry. Helps to understand, for example, why Microsoft or Google has achieved dominance in their respective market, why young consumers don't want to pay for films or music anymore or why the keyboard we are using is like it is. Due to its date of publication (1999), several examples are somewhat outdated. Discussion about U.S. Governmental policies is a little deductive and not so interesting. An excellent overview of the economic laws and good-case business practices in the information industry. Helps to understand, for example, why Microsoft or Google has achieved dominance in their respective market, why young consumers don't want to pay for films or music anymore or why the keyboard we are using is like it is. Due to its date of publication (1999), several examples are somewhat outdated. Discussion about U.S. Governmental policies is a little deductive and not so interesting. Otherwise, a great book for anyone doing business in information technology.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Johnny Galt

    Great book on nuts and bolts of business and economics in relation to the internet and computers. This book is a bit dated and much has changed since thie time this book comments on but for the most part it is so thorough in laying groundwork it is informative to read even now. There is potentially no book like it on the subject of computers and economics.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

    Excellent book. Squeezes many of the 1990s tech business and policy battles into traditional economic theory about lock-in costs, positive feedback, price discrimination etc. Survived the test of time surprisingly well. Although he does suggest the Apple Macintosh could be in trouble, which was largely true, shame about all the other products.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tarun Rattan

    The book is bit dated but does contain a lot of interesting case studies which can be brought forward and superimposed with kids on the block in the current decade. It help explains some of the important tech events in the last few decades and is a useful chronicle to read. Not sure why author did not come out with the revised addition as it would have been so useful for everybody.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    An excellent information\technology strategy read. Really needs an update given when it was published which I'd love to see.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sridhar Jammalamadaka

    Too good. Learnt so much from this book about network economy.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Robert Grossman

    A thoughtful book about the impact of the Internet. It is still worth reading.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lucas

    They key takeaway for me is the concept of lock in and how to manage the issue. Few other economics texts I've read so far have articulated the issues and strategies as lucidly as this text.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Frank Thun

    too basic thoughts for my taste

  22. 4 out of 5

    Hannah

    g

  23. 4 out of 5

    Maria

    Never finished this one. The book jacket promises the arguments are timeless, but they're not. I was disappointed to see them completely disregard piracy as an avenue to explore.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Nicholas Moryl

    Good overview of information economy, albeit a little outdated (it was written in the late 90s).

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lori Grant

    An optional-read book on managing technology strategy for managers, executives, and entrepreneurs.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Andy Tan

    Learned a lot. recommend to read.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jose

    good book about the (micro) economics of information. network effects, etc.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Charles

    Very dated.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kelvin Chong

  30. 4 out of 5

    Martin Eigtved

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