I have been looking closely to technological revolutions for quite some time in my effort to understand the system environment of what emerged as the Value Added Electricity Architecture Framework. As far as I know, the most important research work on technological revolutions started at the Center for Business Research of the UK. They documented four technological revolutions which followed Kondratiev's long wave model and identified the 5th as the information and communications technological revolution. They were driven not by just one technology but by a cluster of technologies that mutually reinforce each other over a period of 50 o 60 years when they run out of steam and were replaced by a better one.
Carlota Perez, one of those researchers followed up the above research and wrote the book “TECHNOLOGICAL REVOLUTIONS AND FINANCIAL CAPITAL: The Dynamics of Bubbles and Golden Ages. She also sees an emerging 6th revolution which is not clear yet, as the Age of Biotech, Nanotech, Bioelectronics and New Materials? To get a better feeling on Carlota's work, please take a look, for example, at one of hers her presentations.
I now understand that the first 4 revolutions defined the industrial civilization or the 2nd Wave of Alvin Toffler. Recently she responded to a comment that the 5th revolution might be the first revolution of the next civilization, which fits very well with Alvin Toffler's 3rd Wave.
Elsewhere I wrote that “Right now 2nd Wave status quo civilization and Third Wave emerging civilization are in a big fight that was anticipated by Alvin Toffler back in 1980. We are able to see that fight as a global economic depression, with 2nd Wave institutions, like the IMF, the World Bank, doing the job for which they were designed to protect the 2nd wave. The IEEE is still a 2nd Wave civilization institution and the proposal IEEE members are not expecting is a transformation to make it a 3rd Wave civilization organization.”
That proposal is in line with Carlota’s conclusion on the PDF that says:
Another important lesson that Chris Freeman taught us is that:
Beyond the interdisciplinary understanding of the economy
OUR ACADEMIC WORK HAS FULL MEANING WHEN IT ENGAGES IN THE BETTERMENT OF SOCIETY
Will we reach the golden age or waste this opportunity?
WE SHALL ALL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE OUTCOME
Finally, please take a look at a 4 min video of Carlota Perez to see what’s still missing to move to the Golden Age of the 3rd civilization