Information Wants to Be Shared: New eBook From Harvard Business Review Press

18-Oct-2012 1:00 PM EDT

University of Toronto

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Newswise — A new ebook from Harvard Business Review Press takes a fresh examination of the economics of information selling in the digital age. What information really wants—what makes it more valuable, useful, and immediate, argues Joshua Gans, a professor at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, is to be shared.

Using the tools and logic of information economics, Information Wants to be Shared, shows how sharing enhances most information’s value. He also shows how the business models of traditional media companies, gatekeepers who have relied on scarcity and control, have collapsed in the face of new technologies. Equally important, he argues that sharing can revive moribund, threatened industries even as he examines platforms that have, almost accidentally, thrived in this new environment.

“Thinking about shared information, and innovative business models to achieve it, is really in its infancy. Platforms are developing that allow content to be distributed and then read easily. These are likely to produce important competitive forces for consumer attention,” says Prof. Gans.

Prof. Gans is the Jeffrey S. Skoll Chair of Technical Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Rotman School. Prior to 2011, he was the Foundation Professor of Management (Information Economics) at the Melbourne Business School, University of Melbourne and prior to that he was at the School of Economics, University of New South Wales. In 2011, he was a visiting researcher at Microsoft Research (New England). Prof. Gans holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University and an honours degree in economics from the University of Queensland.

Further information on Information Wants to Be Shared is available online.

At the Rotman School, he teaches MBA and Commerce students Network and Digital Market Strategy. Last year he co-founded the blog, Digitopoly, which examines competition in the digital economy. While his research interests are varied Prof. Gans has developed specialties in the nature of technological competition and innovation, economic growth, industrial organization and regulatory economics. In 2011 he received a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to study the economics of knowledge contribution and distribution.

The Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is redesigning business education for the 21st century with a curriculum based on Integrative Thinking. Located in the world’s most diverse city, the Rotman School fosters a new way to think that enables the design of creative business solutions. The School is currently raising $200 million to ensure Canada has the world-class business school it deserves. For more information, visit www.rotman.utoronto.ca.

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