ParisTech Review has a passion for alternative and disruptive economic models, those that may shape tomorrow's economy. Here are seven articles, published between 2011 and today, presenting seven major innovative models.

The economics of the multitude, by Nicolas Colin & Henri Verdier

The digital revolution is not only a matter of technologies. The players involved can be described as radical innovators, whose work has a direct impact on social exchanges – from friendship to trade. The shock wave is gradually spilling out of our screens and hitting the rest of the economy. The concept of multitude helps us grasp what is at stake.

Not for free: creating new revenue models, by Saul Berman & Jerry Wind

The phenomenon of free has hit many businesses hard, particularly media businesses. But companies like Google, Amazon or Apple have proved successful redesigning their business model. By the way, who pays for free content? And what will business models look like in the future?

3 – Intention economy: from the fringes to mainstream? By Doc Searls

Vendor relationship management is on the rise. Though for the last ten years a powerful trend has driven marketers to trap consumers and collect their personal data in order to anticipate their wishes to the point the very idea of choice was questioned, disruptive ways of managing this relationship are emerging. Will consumers recover their freedom?

Goodbye services, goodbye goods: welcome to the solutions economy, by Michèle Debonneuil

Enterprises are now able to collect all kind of real-time information about the needs of each consumer. They can provide innovative products that are neither goods nor services but something else, in between, that could be called solutions. Around these solutions we are witnessing the emergence of original business models, and more generally, of a new economy.

5 – Sustainable development: can functional economy fit square pegs in round holes? By Yoann Sidoli

Economists, as well as companies, increasingly care about the ecologic crisis. Various approaches are emerging that all strive to reduce the environmental impacts of the production and consumption of manufactured goods. Among them, functional economy triggers three dramatic mutations, regarding value estimation, ownership and the relation to time. The company’s business strategy is no longer focused on selling a greater number of products, but on aggregating a greater number of users. In a conventional economic model, the company can increase its profits by reducing the life cycle of products; whereas in a functionality approach, the provider must maximize the number of uses of its offer by designing sustainable products.

6 – The circular economy, front-stage soon? By  Yves Legrain

In industrial spheres, the trend towards circular economy is drawing increasing closer attention. Some companies have identified in the recycling business an opportunity to develop new activities, while others see eco-design as a means to raise profit margins, while yet others see a way to re-think their corporate organization. Corporate image is part of the changing scene, but the circular economy concept is now a real industrial concern. Nonetheless, a lot remains to be done to make it fully operational. The challenge is now to see the concept reach maturity.

7 – Is social innovation the future of the economy? By ParisTech Review Editors

For a long time, the distinction between profit and non-profit has had the trappings of obviousness: it was so naturally self-evident that questioning it made no sense. At the most a few contact areas could be pinpointed such as the existence of forms of capitalism concerned with their social impact. But in essence, these two worlds diverged in their purpose: it was either making money or helping others. However, in the course of the last ten years this distinction has started to fade out. The new forms of social entrepreneurship that are emerging today need to be scrutinized because they may well prefigure some of the aspects of tomorrow’s economy. The development of open source systems and the fascinating economic uses of free services have shown how the profit economy could revitalize itself by incorporating non-profit exchange. Networks like Facebook have revealed that social interaction has economic value. Yet the distinction between business entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs was precisely based on these diverging finalities or outputs. What happens with such a differentiation if the creation of social ties is to become the core for new economic activities?

Read the full report here, in PDF: Special Report – 1 – EN

(What of peer to peer models, sharing economy, distributed production, and so and so? Patience, dear readers, is the mother of all virtues! This series is not ending here. Many more articles are still to come. And contributors are welcome.)

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