A talk by Robert Atkinson, Founder and President of Information Technology and Innovation Foundation
In their provocative new book, Big is Beautiful: Debunking the Myth of Small Business, Robert Atkinson and his co-author Michael Lind argue that small business is not, as is widely claimed, the basis of American prosperity. Small business is not responsible for most of the country’s job creation and innovation, because most small businesses fail. American democracy does not depend on the existence of brave bands of self-employed citizens. Small businesses are not systematically discriminated against by government policymakers. The idea that self-employed citizens are the foundation of democracy is a relic of Jeffersonian dreams of an agrarian society. And governments, motivated by a confused mix of populist and free market ideology, in fact go out of their way to promote small business. Pointing to the advantages of scale for job creation, productivity, innovation, and virtually all other economic benefits, Atkinson and Lind argue for a “size neutral” policy approach in both the United States and around the world that would encourage growth rather than enshrine an anachronism. If we overthrow the “small is beautiful” ideology, we will be able to recognize large firms as the engines of progress and prosperity that they are.
- Sponsored by:
- Economics; Int'l Politics & Economics; Political Science; ENGAGED LISTENING PROJECT