Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Creative Destruction

The stock markets are a bit alarming at the moment. I am trying to remember what Schumpeter had to say about "creative destruction". Something about phases of technology innovation when times are good. One problem is that everything seems to have been driven by finance during the time I can remember. An economy based on production is a bit far off, but maybe in the future as well as in the past.

Anyway, this came to mind through a blog post from Jo Francis repeated in print in Printweek.

For more than a decade now people have been talking to me about the likelihood of a major "correction" in print supply and demand. Looking at the restructuring going on among papermakers, and with news of print company failures emerging on an almost daily basis, I wonder if world events will hasten the arrival of this mythical correction point now?

A technology shift could be towards the Web and digital communication, with print still included. Something like that seems to me the sort of direction that could happen.

In a Printweek story about the closure of the Leeds Heidelberg office there is a quote from George Clarke-

"The print market has contracted since the three UK divisions were created in 1975. Then, there were 14,000 potential customers, today there are 3,500."

A correction in supply and demand has already started so the scope for technology change is something to consider.


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