The far-reaching technology-driven transformation, nicknamed the programmable economy, has the potential to disrupt virtually every facet of the global economy, according to independent analyst company, Gartner.
Gartner has revealed findings from its Maverick research, which indicate that enabled by metacoin platforms and smart technologies, the programmable economy will support new forms of value exchange, new kinds of markets and new kinds of economies.
Gartner fellow and vice-president, David Furlonger, said the programmable economy represents a massive technology-enabled transformation of traditional concepts of value exchange, empowering individuals and smart machines to both define value and determine how it is exchanged.
He claimed it can be defined as a natively smart economic system that supports and/or manages the production and consumption of goods and services, enabling diverse scenarios of exchange of value — both monetary and non-monetary.
"The global economy is accelerating down a path of massive technology-driven change. As the move toward digital business gathers momentum, we can already see the emergence of the next phase — autonomous business.
“However, these phases still rely on 20th century economic models and we anticipate that beyond autonomous business lies an era of more radical technology-enabled transformation that will eventually have an impact equivalent to that of the Internet," Furlonger said.
According to Furlonger, the Internet of Things (IoT) is also another trend that lends itself to the programmable economy.
"In the IoT, 'things' are becoming smarter, more connected and more relied upon to augment everyone's life. However, there is a critical missing component to the IoT, and that is monetisation. Success or failure with IoT will only be achieved via the development of a new economic platform and monetary operating model. Monetised 'things' will therefore redefine the economy."
As such, Furlonger claimed with new forms of commerce and economic activity, new programmable business models and new modes of social interaction will evolve and, eventually, new legal and societal structures will be required.
"The impact of these changes will not, of course, be uniformly positive. Every major new technological development has brought with it unfortunate and even dangerous consequences, and the programmable economy will be no exception,” he said.
Moving forward, Furlonger claimed the most technology-aware and aggressive organisations will need to consider much larger issues, including business models, target markets, product and service portfolios, reward mechanisms, intellectual property rights, legal contracts, accounting and taxation treatments, and customer relationships.
“In fact, they have to do it every way in which they conduct business or interact with individuals and society. This transformation will, however, take more than a decade, giving enterprises and government's time to prepare and respond — if they act now," he said.