Summary of Resource Revolution

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Sustainability experts Stefan Heck and Matt Rogers accept that humankind puts untold stress on Earth’s natural bounty, but contend this generates unprecedented opportunities for innovation-led exponential growth. Companies can substitute or recycle materials, redesign products, pursue creative reuse, and more. The authors’ authoritative case studies, sense of historical context, informative graphs and handy summaries clarify their anti-Malthusian message of achievable abundance. The authors repeatedly show ways in which smart innovation can rescue resources and, thus, help heal the planet. Heck and Rogers’ reasoned optimism proves infectious; it’s certainly inspiring – though perhaps sometimes a little insistent. getAbstract recommends their analysis to business students and professors, managers, decision makers and entrepreneurs seeking to explore and benefit from the wise use of resources.

About the Authors

Stefan Heck, a consulting professor at the Precourt Institute for Energy, researches energy, innovation and resource topics. Matt Rogers, a director at McKinsey & Company, advises energy clients worldwide, and writes about resource and energy markets.



Resource Optimism

Your organization can reap the rewards of a vast, commercial opportunity in resources. Demand from 2.5 billion members of a strong, urbanized middle class will strain the environment and resource availability. But revolutionary increases in productivity based on advances in materials science, manufacturing and IT will usher in the “next industrial revolution” – a sustainable shift of scale and pace. To exploit this “resource revolution,” prepare now.

“The Greatest Business Opportunity in a Century”

Expect future changes in resource use that are greater in scope and scale than those of the first industrial revolution, which replaced manual labor with steam power, and the second industrial revolution, which spurred mass urbanization. This historic migration to the cities continues apace in developing countries such as China and India, which will see the greatest increases in numbers of people moving from rural farm work to better-paid service and industrial jobs in emerging cities. Today’s urban life grew from innovation: from the advent of the internal combustion engine to the growth of capital markets, and the development of livable “urban...

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