Three Myths About the Digital Economy


The digital economy is bigger than you think. Much bigger. Some call it the Second Machine Age. The Germans refer to it as Industry 4.0. In Davos, the World Economic Forum has crowned it the Fourth Industrial Revolution. No one is playing down the future impact of digital. But there is a danger that many are underestimating its prevalence today.

New research from Accenture Strategy reveals that the digital economy represents one-third of the U.S. economy. That’s equivalent to $5.9 trillion. The proportion is similar in the U.K. and Australia, and falls to about one quarter in France and Germany. China’s digital economy represents less than 15 percent of its current GDP.

This fresh data matters. Too many businesses and organizations assume that digital is something that will happen to them. They expect technology-driven startups to disrupt their traditional business models and threaten their competitive position. That may be true. But the breadth of digital assets and skills means that incumbent organizations may have a greater digital base to build on. It tells us they can be more aggressive and proactive in disrupting markets themselves. [Read More]