President Xi Jinping’s ideological and unpredictable China has a trade footprint seven times as big as Russia’s—and the world relies on it for a variety of goods from active pharmaceutical ingredients to the processed lithium used in batteries. ........ One indication that companies are shifting from efficiency to resilience is the vast build-up in precautionary inventories: for the biggest 3,000 firms globally these have risen from 6% to 9% of world gdp since 2016. Many firms are adopting dual sourcing and longer-term contracts. The pattern of multinational investment has been inverted: 69% is from local subsidiaries reinvesting locally, rather than parent firms sending capital across borders. This echoes the 1930s, when global firms responded to nationalism by making subsidiaries abroad more self-sufficient. .......... In energy, the West is seeking long-term supply deals from allies rather than relying on spot markets dominated by rivals—one reason it has been cosying up to gas-rich Qatar. Renewables will also make energy markets more regional. ....... The long-run inefficiency from indiscriminately replicating supply chains would be enormous. Were you to duplicate a quarter of all multinational activity, the extra annual operating and financial costs involved could exceed 2% of world gdp. ......... The choke-points autocracies control amount to only about a tenth of global trade, based on their exports of goods in which they have a leading market share of over 10% and for which it is hard to find substitutes. .......... if you are a consumer of global goods and ideas—that is to say, a citizen of the world—you should hope globalisation’s next phase involves the maximum possible degree of openness. A new balance between efficiency and security is a reasonable goal. Living in a subsidised bunker is not.
A New Genre of Work traditional corporations with bloated management and poor incentives for employees and users no longer effectively create value. Rather than focusing on practicing the craft at hand, tremendous energy is wasted optimizing for zero-sum games of equity vesting, salary negotiation, and organizational politics. .......... Companies now recognize that, without a steep increase in transaction or bureaucracy costs, they can flexibly scale up or down throughput through a new class of labor—freelancers. ........ The product sees an absence of credit or attribution to freelancers at an organizational level. While their work may have persisted in sustaining the essence of a product, their very own identity as a contributor is abstracted away by the company. ....... Traditional companies, with rigid hierarchies but abundant resources, make competing for attention internally exhausting for all participants. ...........
It’s clear that the most thorny problems facing humanity today—climate crisis, cybersecurity, income inequality to name a few—will not be solved by one corporation or one individual. These problems need to be addressed with the scale and efficiency of a corporation, without compromising on individual autonomy, creativity, and ownership. They require fluid and multidisciplinary collaboration that transcends the borders of institutions, from corporations to nation-states......... They demonstrate how with a clearly defined goal and a well-defined action — contributing capital — a group of people can be coordinated in record speed. .......... Once a worker leaves the organization, their identity is effectively erased and they must rebuild and retell their narrative within the context of another institution. Web3 allows contributors to have ownership over their body of work while their entire system of record exists on-chain, providing the context needed for contributors’ reputation to become legible to multiple communities. Contributors can even thrive through pseudonymous accounts that ensure privacy. ........... In traditional systems, compensation and authority are explicitly defined and pre-negotiated (titles, roles, and compensation), even though trust and responsibility are implicitly earned. Token mechanisms create infinite possibilities for how credit can now be attributed granularly to all project contributors. ......... Tokens also enable stronger value allocation among contributors, as votes of high trust or appreciation. Creating more multidimensional opportunities for power and authority to flow between individuals and communities will enable a higher degree of overall decentralization.
Unpacking the D in DAO