The fourth industrial era was supposed to usher in a new era of industrial productivity.
And it has, but it has done so in a manner that is largely unrecognizable from the past.
In this article, we explore why this has been the case.
In fact, as the fifth industrial revolution began to take shape in the mid-1990s, we find that the first three industrial revolutions did much better than expected.
We begin by examining the economic impact of the fourth and fifth industrial revolutions on the economy, and how it has played out.
The following chart shows how the economy has performed during the last four decades of this period:Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bureau of Economic Analysis, Industrial Productivity, Current Employment Statistics, March 31, 2020Source: The National Bureau of Standards, Industrial Production and Gross Domestic Product, Current Population Survey, February 1, 2020