Daniel Levinthal

The Wharton School

University of Pennsylvania

United States

Professor Levinthal has published extensively on questions of organizational adaptation and industry evolution, particularly in the context of technological change. He is a fellow of both the Strategic Management Society and the Academy of Management. He currently serves as editor-in-chief of Strategy Science and has previously served as editor-in-chief of Organization Science.

Voting History

Statement Comments
Relaxing the rules around physical presence in the office will improve employee productivity and firm performance. Neither Agree nor Disagree “I think the effects will differ in the short run versus the longer term and for established employees versus individuals newer to the organization. In the short run, there are some efficiency benefits. However, over a longer period, the lack of interaction with colleagues, particularly more-spontaneous unplanned interactions, will likely hurt innovativeness. Also, new employees are likely to find the socialization process as to ’how things are done around here‘ more challenging in a world of remote work. ”
The COVID-19 pandemic has permanently changed how companies should think about business strategy. Agree “The pandemic greatly accelerated systemic changes that were already taking place: Technology enabled remote work, online (and home delivered) goods. Whenever we enter a “post-pandemic” period from a public health perspective, it will not look like 2019 from a business strategy perspective. ”
In the wake of recent climate-related disasters and related events, such as the bankruptcy of PG&E, corporations are now planning for the increased operational risks and potential liabilities caused by climate change. Agree “Clearly the answer here varies by industry and sector — but that is more an issue of degree than whether or not climatic changes are on the radar of executive teams for their implications for operational risk of specific events and longer-term strategic considerations regarding the viability of certain sites, shifts in demand patterns, and need for carbon-light processes.”
U.S. regulations have been rolled back in a number of areas, including emissions standards and clean water. Companies will decide to voluntarily adhere to rules that closely resemble the original standards. Neither Agree nor Disagree “I think there will be considerable diversity, with some firms taking advantage of the relaxed standards to shift their activities in that direction, while others will choose to adhere to the prior standards based on beliefs of subsequent regulatory shifts and broad macro trends.”
Introducing 5G networks 3-5 years ahead of other countries will give Chinese firms an advantage. Agree “The Chinese government can be expected to privilege national firms in building out this network and technology providers whose systems will interface with this platform.”
A hard Brexit will have a significant negative impact on many businesses, even if they do not have a U.K. or European presence. Agree “The hard Brexit would likely be a negative shock to the U.K. and EU, which in turn should act as a negative demand shock for the global economy.”
In the next five years, the blockchain will have a transformative effect on finance in emerging markets. Agree “in some cases, emerging economies without an existing ‘installed base’ of structures/products/service are early adopters of new platforms. This could be an instance of this phenomenon.”
In the absence of a carbon tax, industry self-regulation can help mitigate the worst fallout from climate change. Disagree “The volunteer approach would require a cooperative equilibrium across many players from a variety of industries — it is hard to see how such an equilibrium could emerge and be sustainable.”
Restrictions on skilled immigration will cause US firms to to shift more operations overseas. Agree “I would think this effect would be focused on R&D/development activities as this effect won’t seem to impact the already strong forces pushing/keeping manufacturing overseas.”
Uber has to develop self-driving cars in the next 10 years in order to remain viable. Strongly Agree “Uber can be thought of as being in the technology enabled point-to-point transit business. Driverless cars will provide that same service at considerably less cost than the current driver-based [business].”
A trade war will be more disruptive to business than to consumers. Strongly Agree “Consumers face possible high costs but have the availability of substitutes. Firms risk losing market access and/or viability — a loose analogy to a displacement of a Cournot equilibrium to a Bertrand equilibrium.”
Concern over consumer privacy will fundamentally limit businesses’ ability to use big data. Did Not Answer