The 4 Waves Of Industrial Revolution

This ground-breaking model outlines the four waves of industrial and cultural revolution that human civilization has undergone over its history, breaking down the most critical factors for each period.
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  • The 4 waves of Industrial Revolution
  • Examples of exponentially accelerating change, helping you understand why the life expectancy of S&P 500 companies is decreasing
  • The UNITE Business Model Environment Canvas, allowing you to strategically assess the emerging trends and disruptive forces that affect your business model and organizatoin
  • Overview of the entire UNITE Business Model Framework, helping you understand the role of the Business Model Environment Canvas in context

Clear visual representation of the entire history of human civilization with an emphasis on cultural, technological and organizational development

Helps you understand the interconnected nature of industry and culture

Allows you to understand what has happened, what is happening in our world today, and offers a glimpse into the future

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Richard Cobie, CEO

Reviewed on 15 July 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

I completely re-evaluated the role of innovation in business growth: before reading this book I have to admit I thought it only entailed product new features and technologies enhancements, while now I see it has everything to do with meeting customer needs and uncovering a business USP, which automatically translates in sales! Could not recommend it more!

Janette Lavalier, Innovation Professor and Consultant

Reviewed on 15 July 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

Unlike most business innovation books I read over the last years (and even decades) when reading How to create innovation you immediately understand the authors have been there, innovating and transforming some of the world's most amazing brands. Great work!

Karl Meckel, Change Development Manager

Reviewed on 18 July 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

Not only this book offers the most comprehensive innovation and business change overview but it really helps you take the next step, driving you step by step from theory to practice (also with super useful background notes and driving questions)

Franz Hellstrom, Head of Culture

Reviewed on 2 Aug 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

I really enjoyed the whole book, but mostly the culture chapter, mainly because I always failed to acknowledge its major role in favouring or inhibiting business growth. Loved the graphics that helped connect all the dots in a visually appealing (and way easier) way.

Satoru Fukuda, Chief Strategy Officer

Reviewed on 13 Aug 2022

5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended as a purchase, worth the investment!

We’been willing to innovate our business for some years now, but then we always got stuck before we even started, because basically we had no idea where to start…This book helped us do just that: find the right starting point with guiding questions and an incredibly comprehensive innovation overview.

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Why we use it

We are far beyond what we think of as the Industrial Revolution, in fact we are in the midst of a third wave, an information revolution. Regardless of your sector, it is impossible to ignore the power of data and digital technologies. This model helps you see the ways in which cultural and industrial revolutions have shaped our societies over time. It also helps you understand the interconnected nature of industry and culture and provides a glimpse into what may lay ahead of us.

How It Works

Human development has proceeded in a series of waves that we call cradle, agrarian, industrial, informational, and integrated. Of course, like a wave, a change in the mode of value creation doesn’t alter everything at the snap of a finger. In fact, all of the waves coexist right now across the world, sometimes even within the same society or business. For the purposes of analysis, however, we can divide them into somewhat distinct periods.

Often, changes in human organization are driven by new technologies. For instance, humans developed the ability to grow crops and raise livestock, sparking the agrarian revolution. Then they harnessed the power of fossil fuels with the steam engine and electric generator, sparking the industrial revolution. As each of these technological changes happened, however, it led to deeper changes in how we saw ourselves and the world around us, creating new movements in thought, politics, economics and culture. We also developed new values and new goals.
In the last 50 years, we have moved from a world powered by fossil fuel to a world powered by information. This information revolution has increased the rate of acceleration; it is now happening at breakneck speed. And yet, from a cultural perspective, people are beginning to realize that the demarcation between self and collective is false. As we move into an integrated world, we see these differences fall away, and we envision an economy and society that integrates the needs of the individual with the needs of society and of the planet.

What is the goal of the model?

Changing your mindset: The tools, technologies and approaches that worked 20 or even 10 years ago, will no longer ensure future success. Understanding the ways in which industry, business and culture has evolved helps you understand that change is the only constant. The 4 Waves of Industrial Revolution helps you envision a different path for your company, a path of innovation.

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S+P lifetime of companies

A visual depiction of the decreasing lifes expectancy of companies based on data from Standard and Poor’s.

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