By James Wilsdon

Past the hype approximately dot-coms, WAP telephones and dot-com marketers, what affects will e-commerce have on society? How will it have an effect on jobs and native groups? what is going to it suggest for strength use, delivery and the long run form of our towns? How do we make sure that all people enjoys some great benefits of the hot electronic technologies?With contributions from major researchers at lots of Britain's so much influential think-tanks, this booklet is a groundbreaking exploration of the social and environmental affects and possibilities of e-commerce. this can be a necessary publication for an individual - from CEO to patron- who desires to comprehend the effect of the hot economic system on the environment.

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Physical products are becoming lighter and incorporating more intelligent software. Toyota, for example, estimates that software and electronics will account for 30 per cent of the value of the average car by the year 2005. The laptop computer used to write this chapter weighs about the same as the older model it replaced; both contain similar amounts of plastic, gold, silicon and other metals. Yet this newer laptop is perhaps five times more powerful than the old one. This difference is entirely due to the way in which the same physical ingredients have been minutely rearranged according to a new recipe.

Innovation Information technology is having a profound effect on the way businesses are organized. The goal in the old, industrial economy was optimization: finding the most efficient way to make a product, given existing technology. The new economy is driven by innovation and adaptation: finding creative new ways to generate value. This provides the potential for whole systems of production to be rethought from the ground up, rather than undergoing incremental change. This kind of whole-system innovation is complex, however, and is often only realized within a much larger context of social, organizational and political change.

New green consumerism The green movement should be at the forefront of attempts to create a green consumer culture on the internet. It should create green consumer clubs to aggregate buying power, and encourage companies to provide more online environmental information to consumers. Promoting innovation Government should review products and process regulations so that they better promote innovation, which is good for both competitiveness and the environment. This means shifting the basis for regulation away from best available technology (BAT) towards targets and outcomes.

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