The Evolution of the Global Digital Platform Economy: 1971-2021

32 Pages Posted: 20 Mar 2021

See all articles by Zoltan J. Acs

Zoltan J. Acs

Schar School of Policy and Government

Abraham Song

Pepperdine University

László Szerb

University of Pécs

David B. Audretsch

Indiana University Bloomington - School of Public & Environmental Affairs (SPEA)

Eva Komlosi

University of Pécs

Date Written: February 14, 2021

Abstract

The emergence of digital technologies has significantly reduced the economic costs of data—search, storage, computation, transmission—and enabled new economic activities. Over the years, firms able to create a platform-based ecosystem have become a force of “creative destruction.” Economic activities (C2C, B2C, B2B) have been reorganized around platform-based ecosystems for value creation and value appropriation, which are orchestrated by multisided platforms via the “digital hand.” To further understanding of the Digital Platform Economy (DPE), this paper provides a conceptual framework consisting of three interrelated concepts: digital technology infrastructure, multisided digital platforms, and platform-based ecosystems (users and entrepreneurs). Quantifying the DPE uncovers a European lag in platformization relative to the United States and Asia; European incumbent firms have not introduced new technologies in sufficient volume, and startups there have remained small and not scalable.

Keywords: entrepreneurship, ecosystems, multisided platforms, platform economy, users, transaction costs, digital economics

JEL Classification: L20, M13, O33, D23, D83

Suggested Citation

Acs, Zoltan J. and Song, Abraham and Szerb, Laszlo and Audretsch, David B. and Komlosi, Eva, The Evolution of the Global Digital Platform Economy: 1971-2021 (February 14, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3785411 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3785411

Zoltan J. Acs (Contact Author)

Schar School of Policy and Government ( email )

Founders Hall
3351 Fairfax Dr.
Arlington, VA 22201
United States
703-993-1780 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://home.ubalt.edu/zacs

Abraham Song

Pepperdine University ( email )

24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://gsep.pepperdine.edu/about/our-people/faculty/abraham-song/

Laszlo Szerb

University of Pécs ( email )

Rákóczi st. 80
Pécs, 7622
Hungary

HOME PAGE: http://ktk.pte.hu/en/department-quantitative-management/laszlo-szerb

David B. Audretsch

Indiana University Bloomington - School of Public & Environmental Affairs (SPEA) ( email )

1315 East Tenth Street
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States

Eva Komlosi

University of Pécs ( email )

Rákóczi út 80
Pécs, 7622
Hungary

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