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How the 20th Century Tech Boom Left Us Rich & Uncertain

Featured Events | Feb 28, 2023 |

In the early 1800’s, most of the world’s population lived in poverty. After a major technological advancement trend starting in 1870, people’s life spans, means of living, and income increased significantly, and some believed that growth would lead to a utopian society. Instead, today we are wrestling with climate change, economic depression, inequality, and an uncertain future.

In this webinar sponsored by the Gabelli Center for Global Security Analysis, Museum of American Finance, and CFA Society of New York, J. Bradford DeLong, Ph.D., author, economist, and professor at the University of California at Berkeley, detailed this unprecedented era of transformation—and its unexpected and unfulfilled outcomes.

One of the greatest concerns about advancing technology is its environmental impact. Although many companies are investing in environmental, social, and governance practices, the cost of sustainability remains a key obstacle. DeLong said that while environmentally-conscious strides have been made, money management is getting in the way of making even more progress.

“The extent to which we move from slash-and-burn agriculture, to fossil fuels, to renewables does an enormous amount for air and water pollution. Our failures are failures of management and using our wealth wisely. It doesn’t demonstrate that our wealth is less, it demonstrates that we can’t use it effectively.”

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