Rat Race Dynamics and Crazy Companies: The Diffusion of Technologies and Social Behavior
Program for the Human Environment
The Rockefeller University
1230 York Avenue
New York, NY 10021-6399
Citation: Technological Forecasting and Social Change 39, 11-22 (1991).
PDF Full Text: ratrace.pdf
How and why do technlogies spread when and where they do? What are the implications and consequences for the structure, wealth, and management of human organizations? These expanseive quetions were the subject of the presentations and discussions of the International Conference on Diffusion of Technologies and Social Behavior, summarized in this paper. The paper is organized under the following headings: empirical regularities; theoretical issues; predictability; time and space; innovation and niche definition; selection dynamics; role of marketing; social aspects; globalization; and applications. While the paper treats some questions for policy in both the public and private sectors, it emphasizes research needs and opportunities in the diffusion field.