13 December 2022, 13:00
Digital technologies have been the driving force of business revolutions in the 2010s and 2020s, aided by technological advancements in sensors, drones, powerful computers, cloud computing, distributed ledger technology, and mobile technologies. One of the most important elements of this digital tsunami has been the Internet of Things (IoT), where smart sensors (i.e., connected sensors, as opposed to standalone sensors such as a temperature thermometer not connected to anything else) can communicate their readings of a variable of interest to a local or remote processing unit, which synthesizes and acts upon the data from the sensors. The Internet of Things is one of the key elements of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, in which producers are increasingly automating their operations. Although IoT was originally conceived of for Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communication, the biggest commercial success has been for smart consumer-facing devices. This success, along with producer automation, has created economic value in all the major economies of the world. In this article, we discuss how IoT transforms traditional value chains into digitalized ecosystems, and the business model implications of that transition. We also discuss how IoT introduces new technological and social features of organizational design, prompting changes regarding at least three critical aspects of design. We describe recent work in Technovation on the subject IoT and propose areas of future research in the management domain.
Professor of Digital Strategy & Innovation at Imperial College Business School and Co-Director (Education) for I-X, Imperial’s new campus concept centred on AI/ML, data, and digital. Professor Tucci is Academic Director of the Centre for Digital Transformation at Imperial College Business School as well. He was Professor of Management of Technology at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), where he held the Chair in Corporate Strategy & Innovation. From 2013-2018, he was Dean of the College of Management at EPFL. In 2018, he was Visiting Thought Leader at CEIBS in Shanghai, China. He received the degrees of Ph.D. in Management from the Sloan School of Management, MIT; SM (Technology & Policy) from MIT; and BS (Mathematical Sciences), AB (Music), and MS (Computer Science) from Stanford University. He was an industrial computer scientist involved in developing Internet protocols and applying artificial intelligence tools. Professor Tucci teaches courses in Deep Tech Acceleration, Design Thinking, Digital Strategy, and Innovation Management. His primary area of interest is in how firms make transitions to new business models, technologies, and organizational forms. He also studies crowdsourcing, Internetworking, and digital innovations. He has published articles in, among others, Academy of Management Review (AMR), Strategic Management Journal, Management Science, Research Policy, Communications of the ACM, Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, Academy of Management Annals, and Journal of Product Innovation Management. He has served in leadership positions in the Academy of Management (AOM) and the Strategic Management Society.