A recent article by Jarboe again reminded me of his take on the era (with no agreed-upon name) that we are living in now.
It has variously been called a knowledge economy, information economy, post-industrial economy etc and Jarboe adds to the mix with the “I Cubed economy”, which is shorthand for the “Information, Innovation and Intangibles economy”.
Kenan Jarboe is the former Chief Economist for the US Senate Democratic Policy Committee and the leader of a non-profit organisation “Athena Alliance” whose mission is to “explore the promise and pitfalls of the global information economy”.
Whilst this term has popped up in Jarboe’s work before, he explains it in detail in the Q&A article in the Fall edition of the Rotman Magazine, which is devoted to “The Future of Capital“. I like the term because it brings together the elements which I am exploring in my own research, particularly the intersection of and appropriate measurements for the three I’s which form the I-Cubed Economy. I’m exploring ways to expand the “If it can’t be measured it can’t be managed”‘ machine-era view of only measuring tangibles, to incorporate the notion of “but what gets left out can’t be leveraged” so as to include the invisible I-Cubed elements too.
This has so far led to one journal article and a recent presentation about “RoI on Executive Coaching” for an Executive Coaching Summit held in Canberra in October. The slideshow below about RoI and Executive Coaching depicts the need to expand the traditional, economic model of RoI by showing that it only accounts for about one-quarter of investments in knowledge organisations today. The rest of the slides look at the impediments to RoI on people because of what Argyris calls our ‘defensive routines’.