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Not the e-conomy

The main impact of the new information technology is to boost demand and employment in "high touch" service sectors. But the big challenges lie in areas which economy barely affects

By Adair Turner   April 2001

When tony blair spoke at the CBI conference in November 1999, he used the phrase “It’s the e-conomy, stupid.” It was delivered somewhat apologetically, but it captured New Labour’s fascination with the “new” economy. The Competitiveness White Paper of 1988 was entitled “Building the knowledge driven economy,” and identified the US as the model to emulate because of its success in information and communications technology (ICT). Britain, it argued, must lead Europe in the e-commerce revolution and to that end it was equipped in summer 1999 with an “e-tsar.” Education and training policy was to be designed to prevent the…

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